Kingston debuts municipal ID program at Multicultural Fest

A scene from last year’s Kingston Multicultural Festival. (Photo by Phyllis McCabe)

The city will use this Sunday’s seventh annual Kingston Multicultural Festival to officially launch its municipal ID program.

City officials announced Wednesday that City Clerk Elisa Tinti will be in attendance at the festival, set for Sunday, June 2 at T.R. Gallo Park at the foot of Broadway in Downtown Kingston, with a machine to make the cards. Spanish-language assistance and translation will be available at the at city’s table at the festival. The card will be available to any Kingston resident age 14 years or older who is able to meet the identity and residency requirements. The card includes photo, name, address, date of birth, height and signature, and is valid for four years from date of issue. More information, a list of required/accepted documents, and a list of businesses participating in the Kingston ID Discount Program can be found at www.kingston-ny.gov/kingstonID.

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The Common Council approved the municipal ID program late last year. Also adopted by Middletown and Newburgh, the goal is to get valid legal ID cards in the hands of those who for various reasons, including immigration status, find themselves to unable to get state-issued identification.

“I am excited to launch the Kingston ID program, which closely aligns with our efforts to build a safe, welcoming and inclusive community where every person is valued and respected,” said Noble in a press release. “In addition to promoting a sense of unity and connectedness among all of our residents, this program will ensure that our most vulnerable neighbors have the identification they need to perform the most basic functions that many of us take for granted. Whether it is picking up your child from school, visiting a loved one in the hospital, receiving the resident rate for summer camp, or even getting a library card, presenting a valid photo ID is often required. In addition to the social and civic benefits, municipal IDs empower residents who are the victims of or witnesses to crimes to feel more comfortable to report such crimes to local police agencies.”

IDs will be available at the city clerk’s office on the first floor of City Hall starting Monday, June 3, from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. The price for adults over age 18 is $10, and $5 for veterans, seniors and those ages 14-17. All identifying documentation will be returned or destroyed after the application has been processed.

The festival itself will feature live ethnic music and dance, multicultural handicrafts, children’s activities and food and drinks.

Food at the festival sold by local cultural groups will include Middle Eastern falafel, Greek gyros, Colombian arepas, kosher hamburgers and hot dogs, African-American Southern style fried-fish sandwiches, fried dough, shaved ice and more.

The radio program “Tutto Italiano” (“Everything Italian”) is to broadcast live from the festival on Radio Kingston, WKNY, 1490 AM and 107.9 FM, from 1 to 2 p.m. Host Tony Marmo will interview cultural group members and festivalgoers.

For more information about the festival, visit the festival’s Facebook event page, bit.ly/2Kbr7Hh.

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