People pack a Rockford church to try to get documents from the Mexican Consulate General. The mobile consulate will help around 1500 of its citizens in Rockford over the next few days. Some people are here legally, others illegally and need things like passport of identification cards. The IDs are an important step for people who want to drive legally in Illinois.
"I'm just trying to get my identification here, now so later I can obtain my drivers license," Lucina Bellones.
Although the State of Illinois has not started issuing drivers licenses to illegal immigrants it says photo identification from a home country will be one of the requirements. Not everyone here wants a license but a majority of people visiting the consulate do want a Marticula Consular, which is basically an ID card.
"We provide this document for immigrants their identity, their address and their citizenship. So our people are able to get local services and banking services and access to other services that they might not otherwise be able to access without an ID," says Agustin Rodriguez, Mexican Consulate of Chicago, deputy counsel general.
But that is not the only thing the ID card might be used for.
"Everyone is trying to get everything in order to make sure also when the immigration, the reform of immigration comes through they can also apply for that," says Mary Lou Castro, president of LULAC (League of United Latin American Countries) Rockford.
With more than 400 people scheduled for appoints with the consulate everyday LULAC Rockford is also using the opportunity to host an information fair.
"The governor's office, they sent out nine agencies with respect to family issues, work issues, general information for the community and also we have local agencies that we trust with respect to informing the individuals," says Castro.
The consulate is at Second Congregation First Presbyterian Church, 318 N. Church St., Rockford until Saturday. All appointments for this week have been filled but the consulate will be back in May and September. To make a appointment for call 1-(877)-Mexitel or (312) 738-2383 to reach the Mexican Consulate in Chicago.
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