New York City municipal identification of a program for the day in the court on Thursday if two Staten Island lawmakers argued New York should not destroy the applicants records—for the protection of people without papers—because it is harmful to the national security or public safety.
The lawsuit challenging the IDNYC program was established by the state Councilor Ronald Castorina, Jr. and Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, both Republicans, in the state Supreme Court on Staten Island. In the beginning of December, city officials said they would no longer documents of those who apply for the program, out of fear that President-elect Donald Trump could use them to deport immigrants without papers. A state judge in December temporarily suspended the city of destroying the records, while the court considers the suit.
The program, which began in 2015, was aimed at increasing the access to the municipal services, such as schools and libraries, particularly among the city’s estimated half a million people without papers. There are now nearly a million cardmembers.
The two lawmakers claim that the destruction of the records is contrary to the state’s Freedom of Information Law. City officials say that in the destroying of records, such as a passport or birth certificate, they were following the city law, which the program. But most of Thursday’s hearing, in which several city officials testified, focused not on the public record-keeping rules, but on a variety of topics, from terrorism to fraud.
“This is a problem in which the blood of the Americans,” Mr. Castorina testified. A terrorist could use the city ID to open a bank account, he added.
The lawyers, the legislators said that the law violated the U.S. Patriot Act. Lawyer Ravi Batra wondered whether the law takes into account the public safety and national security,” especially when we had 9/11 here?”
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