Hundreds of stateline immigrants get a new lease on life with ID cards from the Mexican consulate. These cards are so valuable to Mexicans in Rockford
Juan Gonzalez waited in lines for most of the day to get an identification card from the Mexican consulate. He hopes it can provide a better life for him, his wife and two kids. He says it’s very important.
Gonzalez and his wife moved to the U.S. seven years ago and hope to own a home here in Rockford some day.
"I want it to open a checking account and use it for identification in this country," says Gonzalez.
Demand for the ID cards is so high, a line started forming here at 1:30 a.m. in the morning. Over the next few days the consulate expects to issue 1500 identification cards.
"Here it's really useful to open bank accounts and to get on airplanes. It's really useful for us. It could help us with our immigration status," says Oralba Dereal.
Many Mexican citizens living in the U.S. do not have a photo ID so this card can help them identify themselves to build a credit history, find a job or when dealing with the judicial system.
"We want to be able to make it possible here in Rockford that this will be an official form of id. Banks are already recognizing it. So it's working really good," Tanechka McDonald says.
The Mexican consulate has issued about two million Mexican ID cards over the past two years. With so many in circulation, it will be hard to ignore them.
The consulate will issue Mexican identification cards and Mexican passports again on Friday and Saturday at Rockford's La Voz Latina. Hours are from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m.