Federal agencies such as the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) and the U.S. Census Bureau have attempted to obtain sensitive information about immigrants from state agencies in the recent past. While at least two agencies, the NM Department of Workforce Solutions and the Motor Vehicle Division refused to allow blanket access to New Mexicans’ private information, there is no standard policy across state agencies prohibiting such disclosure by employees.
For many state agencies to function properly, they need to obtain sensitive personal information from New Mexicans. When New Mexicans provide this information to state employees, they have a reasonable expectation this information will remain confidential. This act would create a standard non-disclosure policy across all state agencies. With these new categories of protected information, New Mexicans will not have to think twice before accessing health, public safety, and other government services.