New York City hands out millions of dollars in subsidies to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants under Mayor Bill Blasio’s “IDNYC” program, it has emerged.
To add insult to injury, New York City gets a third of its budget from the Federal government, and has also enacted ordinances preventing the enforcement of U.S. Immigration law.
The “IDNYC” program was launched in 2015 by order of Blasio, and is a recognized identification document available to all City residents age 14 and older, “irrespective of immigration status.”
According to the program’s website, the IDNYC card” enables residents to access City services and grant admission to City buildings, such as schools.
“In addition, the card can be presented as proof of identification for interacting with the police and is an accepted form of identification for opening a banking account at select financial institutions.
“Furthermore, a number of additional benefits are available to IDNYC cardholders including the opportunity to sign up for free one-year memberships at 40 of the city’s leading museums, zoos, concert halls, and botanical gardens.
“Adults age 25–61 receive a 10 percent discount off annual and six-month NYC Parks Recreation Center memberships at any of Parks’ 35 neighborhood recreation centers.”
The most important aspect of this program is however the stipulation that the “City will not ask applicants for information about their immigration status for purposes of obtaining the card in accordance with Executive Orders 34 and 41.”
These two executive orders were not created by Blasio, but by one of his predecessors, Michael Bloomberg, in 2003.
These Executive Orders prevent law enforcement officials from inquiring about a “person’s immigration status unless investigating illegal activity other than mere status as an undocumented alien.”
In other words, the executive orders actually forbid the implementation of U.S. immigration law in New York City.
A report from 2016 issued by the NYC Mayor’s office revealed that there have been at least 863,464 sign-ups to the program, and that “over three-quarters of immigrants surveyed reported that the card increases their sense of belonging to the city.”
The report said that the “IDNYC is a necessity, particularly for immigrant communities: 66.6 percent of immigrant survey respondents use IDNYC as their most commonly used photo ID and nearly 25 percent of all survey respondents indicated that the IDNYC card is their only form of U.S. photo identification. More than 50 percent of all survey respondents now use the IDNYC card as their primary ID.”
“Furthermore, “77 percent of survey respondents who were immigrants reported that IDNYC has increased their sense of belonging to the city, and focus group participants appreciated that IDNYC conveys no information about one’s country of origin or legal status.”
A more recent media report quoted Nisha Agarwal, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, as saying that 900,000 people had signed up for the program.
The program now costs the city $30 million, and includes services such as “Action NYC,” which Agarwal described as a “free community-based legal service program.” In addition, the “We Are New York” program provides English language classes.
According to a leaflet provided by the New York City Independent Budget Office, at least one third of the city’s income is derived from “State and Federal Aid,” made up of State Categorical Grants and Federal Categorical Grants. (Categorical grants are grants, issued by the United States Congress, which may be spent only for narrowly defined purposes.)
The bottom line is that the city of New York is using taxpayer money to subsidize the living costs of hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants—and has outlawed the implementation of ordinary immigration law in the city.