Va. DMV helps Richmond inmates get IDs, birth certificates

Published: May. 7, 2015 at 4:40 PM EDT|Updated: May. 17, 2015 at 10:42 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - People at the Richmond City Jail are working to help inmates get identification cards.

"It's really an opportunity," said Dr. Sarah Scarbrough. "A lot of times people don't understand the importance or the advantage of an ID. It's a thing that's so normal, but to a lot of folks here haven't had them for so long. Because finding housing, finding a job, disability, food stamps..."

The jail partnered with the DMV to help 17 inmates get a birth certificate and an ID, like Aurelius Hopkins who hasn't had an ID since the 1980s. He just didn't know how to go about getting a birth certificate and ID

"I didn't know how to do that," said Hopkins. "For 27 years I've been in and out of this facility because I didn't have [either]."

Now, he has both.

"I gotta do something different now. It feel good to go places and be able to pull out an ID. I'm 52 years old, right? And never worked," he explained. "I mean, so, I gotta try to use that."

"We are trying to make better citizens, not better criminals here," said Sarbrough.

This is a program the jail hopes to continue with the help of the DMV on a monthly basis.

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