New York City

Immigrants in NY have new place to go for city-sanctioned photo ID cards

Latest IDNYC pop-up enrollment center on Roosevelt Island is 26th citywide, including five in Brooklyn

October 12, 2016 By James Harney Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Presiding at the opening of the IDNYC Pop-Up Enrollment Center on Roosevelt Island were, from left, Kavita Pawria-Sanchez, assistant commissioner of the Mayor's Office of Immigrant Affairs; Lisa Fernandez, director of the Roosevelt island Senior Center; and Councilmember Ben Kallos (D-Upper East Side-Midtown East-Roosevelt Island). Photos courtesy of NYC Mayor's Office of Immigrant Affairs
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City officials are working very hard to make sure New Yorkers — whether they’ve just arrived or have been here a long time — don’t suffer any kind of identity crisis.

On Tuesday, city, state and federal officials gathered on quiet, oft-overlooked Roosevelt Island to announce the opening of a temporary new location to enroll for IDNYC identification cards.

The pop-up site will run from Oct. 11 to Oct. 17, Mondays from 9 a.m. to noon and Tuesdays through Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., inside the Roosevelt Island Senior Center at 546 Main St. on the island.

The de Blasio administration launched IDNYC in January 2015 to offer every city resident — particularly undocumented immigrants, as well as the elderly, the homeless and those formerly incarcerated — an official form of photo identification where others might not be available to them.

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

So far, city officials say, nearly 1 million IDNYC cards have been issued. Cardholders can present them to gain access to all city buildings, including public schools, and as proof of ID when interacting with police. They are also accepted as identification for opening bank accounts at 12 banks and credit unions, with more than 70 branches across the city.

“I am excited to become one of the almost 1 million IDNYC cardholders, and I am proud to do it in my district on Roosevelt Island,” said Councilmember Ben Kallos (D-Upper East Side-Midtown East-Roosevelt Island), who personally signed up for an IDNYC card after the press conference.

“Congratulations for making IDNYC a success in such a short period of time. I invite all Roosevelt Island residents to sign up and get the card.”

Commissioner Nisha Agarwal of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs (MOIA), who was represented at the opening by Assistant MOIA Commissioner Kavita Pawria-Sanchez, said such pop-up IDNYC sites “bring this important government program directly to New York City’s many diverse neighborhoods and communities.”

Tuesday’s pop-up opening also drew praise from other officials, including state Assemblymember Rebecca Seawright, whose 76th District also includes Roosevelt Island.

“What better place than Roosevelt Island, a neighborhood as diverse as it is inclusive to people of all backgrounds, to hold the next IDNYC pop-up enrollment site,” Seawright said.

Lisa Fernandez, director of the Roosevelt Island Senior Center, called IDNYC “an invaluable service for all New Yorkers, especially the senior community we serve. As reported, seniors have used the card more than any other group to access the wonderful benefits of memberships and discounts offered.”

And state Sen. Jose M. Serrano said, “New York City Identification Cards are an excellent way for members of the city to take advantage of the benefits available to them no matter what their immigration status may be.”

In Brooklyn, there are five permanent IDNYC enrollment centers, including:

– Brooklyn Business Center, 210 Joralemon St. Hours: Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

– Brooklyn Public Library Central Branch, 10 Grand Army Plaza. Hours: Monday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

– Coney Island IDNYC Center, 2865 W. Eighth St. Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

– Make the Road New York, 301 Grove St. Hours: Monday to Thursday, 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

– Asian Americans for Equality, 807 48th St.  Hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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