How Driver’s License Suspensions Unfairly Target The Poor

…is the title of this NPR piece, which examines both how easy it is to lose one's license because of poverty (in Wisconsin, for instance, failure to pay a ticket can result in a two-year suspension, which is harsher than the penalty for either drunk driving or a hit-and-run), and how losing a driver's license contributes to a downward spiral by limiting a person's economic opportunities.

As one 29-year-old father of four in Milwaukee put it (as quoted in the print text of the story):

"It hinders you because most jobs are not in the inner city nowadays. And they get pushed far back, and the buses don't go out there. So the inner-city jobs that we have are not able to provide for our families that we have and to provide for ourselves," [McArthur Edwards] says.

In 2013, Edwards was stopped by police and ticketed for driving with a broken light over his back license plate. State department of transportation records show that when he didn't pay the $64 fine, his driver's license was suspended for two years.

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