Labor Union Seeks Municipal ID From The City Of Houston

Undocumented workers gathered at Houston City Hall Tuesday to demand that city leaders offer the protection of a municipal ID card.

Members of the newly formed Labor and Communities Union

The Labor and Communities Union is the newest group that wants to protect undocumented immigrants, many of them women who represent two-thirds of minimum wage earners.

Linda Morales, with the Houston ALF-CIO, says they face many impediments.

“The lack of living wage jobs, the fear of retaliation when organizing for union representation, and the inability for undocumented families feeling safe due to changes in our immigration system, and the fear of reporting crimes to law enforcement,” Morales says.

The group wants the city to issue a municipal ID card as a way of ensuring protection. Brandon Rottinghaus, associate professor of political science at the University of Houston, says cities like Los Angeles, Washington, DC and New York City have provided a similar card.

“In effect you’ve got, I think a smart way to target the policy outcome that this group wants, and it also helps to find a venue that is friendlier towards immigration and friendly towards business,” Rottinghaus says.

The group plans to take the issue to Houston’s mayor and city council as soon as next week.

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