Washington residents who apply for a standard driver license, instruction permit and ID card are no longer required to provide their place of birth as part of the application process.
Earlier this month, The Seattle Times reported that the Washington Department of Licensing (DOL) had been giving residents' personal information to federal immigration-enforcement officers, who used that information to arrest and deport people under President Trump's immigration policies.
A spokesperson for Governor Jay Inslee's Office said until they were questioned by the Times, they hadn't understood the extent of DOL's cooperation with ICE.
“We’ve asked them to stop what they’re doing at this point,” spokeswoman Jaime Smith had said.
On January 19, DOL filed emergency rule-making to immediately end the collection of information not required by state or federal statute. The change took effect Friday, January 26.
The emergency rule lasts 120 days. During that time, DOL plans to permanently eliminate place of birth as a requirement to apply for a driver license or ID card.
"DOL is taking these actions to ensure the agency is safeguarding personal information that can be used to determine immigration status and to uphold the intent of Governor Inslee’s Executive Order 17-01, Reaffirming Washington’s Commitment to Tolerance, Diversity, and Inclusiveness," DOL said in a press release.
For more information, visit Washington Department of Licensing website.