New York, NY—In an official statement issued today, Governor Andrew Cuomo affirmed his commitment to never allow the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) immigration enforcement agencies access to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles’ database. The Governor’s statement comes as Albany and Washington continue to face off over the Green Light law, which allows any New Yorker to apply for a state driver’s license regardless of their immigration status and blocks DHS from access to the DMV’s database to protect the privacy of all residents. In what many view as a retaliatory and politically-motivated response, the Trump administration froze the trusted traveler program in New York. Despite Governor Cuomo’s attempts to broker a deal by offering DHS access to state drivers records for applicants to the Global Entry program, DHS has remained unwavering in its attempts to force New York to comply with its demands.
Following Governor Cuomo’s statement maintaining his refusal to grant DHS access, Murad Awawdeh, the Executive Vice President of Advocacy and Strategy of the New York Immigration Coalition, said:
“New Yorkers will not be bullied by the Trump administration’s heavy-handed use of the trusted traveler program to hold us hostage. We applaud Governor Cuomo’s refusal to be intimidated nor allow Trump’s deportation force access to the state’s DMV database. All New Yorkers are safer because of the Green Light law, and are smart enough to see through the Administration’s attacks on the protections for immigrants that New York has enacted.”