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the Department of Homeland Security announced Thursday that it would delay the deadline for Americans to apply for and receive a true piece of identification – a driver’s license or an identity card with a gold star in the upper right corner – due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Trump administration has decided to postpone extending the deadline by 12 months to obtain a proper ID until October 1, 2021, after the country’s motor vehicle departments were forced to close because officials have taken precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19, including the closure of overcrowded locations.
“States across the country are temporarily closing or restricting access to VDDs. This will prevent millions of people from requesting and receiving their TRUE IDs,” DHS acting secretary Chad Wolf said in a statement on Twitter.
The Real ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 to establish minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identity cards. The law also prohibits federal agencies from accepting licenses and identity cards from states that do not meet these standards for official purposes such as air travel.
The law sought to tighten security measures to obtain identification after September 11, forcing DMVs to request more documents to prove residence and social security numbers than would otherwise have been required for a license. standard.
“The extension of the deadline will also allow @DHSgov to work with Congress to implement the changes necessary to expedite the issuance of REAL identity documents once the current health crisis has ended, “said Wolf.
The slow rollout of the new ID cards by the federal government has taken nearly 15 years to be fully implemented, but all states in the United States are required to comply with the law within the new deadline.