Dept of Homeland Security Bars New Yorkers from Enrolling in Global Entry

Frequent Business Traveler 2/6/2020

AAA World Article

The Department of Homeland Security said Wednesday that New Yorkers could no longer enroll in the Global Entry and other trusted traveler programs because a new state law known as the “Green Light Law” prevents federal immigration officials from accessing personal information such as a driver’s record without a court order.

In a letter from the acting secretary of the department, Chad Wolf, the agency said that change came in response to the Green Light Law, which allows people with illegal immigrant status to obtain driver’s licenses in the state.

“The Act prevents DHS from accessing relevant information that only New York DMV maintains, including some aspects of an individual’s criminal history,” the letter said. “As such, the Act compromises CBP’s ability to confirm whether an individual applying for TTP membership meets eligibility requirements.”

The move also impacts applications for the Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection, or SENTRI, a program that expedites re-entry into the United States when traveling from Canada or Mexico; NEXUS, which allows for expedited border crossings between the United States and Canada; and the Free and Secure Trade program, or FAST,, which allows importers to clear commercial shipments from Canada and Mexico in an expedited manner.

The state’s Green Light Law went into effect on December 14. It allows undocumented immigrants to apply for driver’s licenses in the state while at the same time protecting applicants’ personal information from immigration authorities without a court order. The state of New Jersey plans to enact similar legislation.

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