Driver's license reinstatement expo gives people second chance back on the road

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chetara Heath is a step closer to restoring her driver's license thanks to an expo organized by the Pilsen Neighbors Community and Gamaliel of Metro Chicago.

"You have a one-on-one Zoom call with an actual attorney who's actually looking at your abstract, going through your record and telling you what it is you need to do and how they can help you," said Heath.

Chair of the Driver's License Reinstatement Expo Alex Garcia said roughly 500 people were expected at Saturday's clinic inside Malcom X College. Some even have the opportunity to appear before a judge.

Garcia said the goal is to make the process less stressful and less of a financial burden.

"It's less intimidating than the regular process of not knowing whether you go to the courtroom or you go to the different building for Secretary of State," said Garcia.

Heath said she's grateful for this second chance after losing her driving privileges nearly two years ago because of red light tickets.

"I was able to go right over to the city, I'm in the same building and pay a fair amount to get on a payment plan," she said.

"We take that for granted where people are either running the risk of getting a felony for driving without a license or having to take public transportation," said Garcia.

"I have to get to work, pick kids up from school," said Heath.

Garcia said he hopes the event will also highlight what he calls a disproportionate impact on minority and low-income communities.

He said he has another expo is in the works for later this year.
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