BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts authorities have suspended the driver’s licenses of more than 100 people who converted licenses earned in Arizona to Massachusetts licenses, and are investigating hundreds more.

Rachel Kaprielian, head of the state Registry of Motor Vehicles, told The Boston Globe that those people who got their licenses in Arizona, largely legal refugees, are breaking the law.

To get a license in Massachusetts, eligible applicants must first pass a written learner’s permit test and then a road test.

Immigrants can take the test in up to 26 foreign languages.

Gov. Deval Patrick said Monday that the registrar was doing “the right thing” by enforcing Massachusetts law, adding he was sorry for any inconvenience the crackdown has caused for individuals.

Officials says refugees are taking advantage of the more lenient Arizona requirements.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (10)
  1. Paul says:

    26 different languages….I cannot wait to see the new laws that require street/highway signs to be required in 26 languages for those unable to read them…..That will be as stupid as the current ATM drive ups that are also in BRAILE ! ! ! !

    1. I am not ignorant r u says:

      ATM makers do not make different key types for ATM. The keys are all made from the same mold (complete with Braille.) If you buy an ATM, regardless of where you are going to use it (walk-up or drive-up,) it will have braille.

    2. otis jackson says:

      If a sight impaired person uses a taxi to go shopping the atm is in braile so that person can withdraw $$$$$

  2. emom says:

    I find it puzzling , that a person that can not speak ENGLISH, goes to the registry to obtain a license, NEEDS an interpeter to ask questions. I remember a man with someone that spoke very broken english, and the registry lady asked him if he could see the red dot, which way the e was going and a few other questions. I mean, thats should not be allowed. If they do not understand english, how in the world will they understand our road signs, STOP , lights, street signs, a cop trying very hard to pull them over… If we go to a foreing country we have to be able to understand their rules and their signs, But I guess this country must be special,, thus causing plenty of problems with non speaking folks,,,, Yeah had the mis fortune to have a person that spoke no english back into my van, Thank god his passanger spoke english ,, And go figure he was trainng him on how to run the truck… You dont back up at a stop light with a bunch of cars behind you… Where do they learn any ways… wait BRAILLE at a drive thru atm ,, hhmmm crazy.

    1. JohnC says:

      Stop signs are pretty much universal. Even in France and Russia, stop signs are red, octagonal, and say STOP in English. The French even laugh at the Quebec French. In Quebec, the Stop signs say ARRET. Traffic lights are the same in every country that I have visited. You have to be a bit of an idiot not to understand a speed limit sign; the only significant difference worldwide is the unit of measurement. Most modern informational signs worldwide have some kind of an understandable pictograph or symbol. In Austria, I would not have known what FLUGHAVEN meant, but with a picture of an airplane, I was able to figure out that it was an airport.

    2. American Girl says:

      They put Braille at ATMs because sometimes the PASSENGER needs to take out money….DUH genius. You speak English and apparently aren’t very bright, how did you pass the test? I can go to Spain and not speak Spanish fluently and still understand their street signs. There’s a big difference between “Can you locate the red dot?” and STOP on a universal red octagon. Even if the sign said Stop in a different language you would probably understand it, but if someone stopped you and asked you a random question like “Can you locate the red dot”…or “Is your shirt plaid or stripes?” you would probably not understand it.

  3. Legs says:

    The tests and laws should be in ENGLISH only if they don’t know ENGLISH they should not be driving in the USA with a dl that was provided in the USA.

  4. jaygee says:

    I recently told my cousin in England that when I go to the store and use my charge card or seek assistance from anyone on the telephone, that I must press 1 for English. We are getting used to it but she simply could not understand why, in an English speaking country, this is allowed. When you think about it, you have to ask yourself the same question. What country is this, anyway?

    1. Daisy says:

      I am a naturalized American citizen born in a Latin American country and I do speak Spanish. You have no idea how ticked off I get when I have to press 1 for English. That is just not right. When we first came here my mother didn’t speak English and we translated for her until she learned the language. Why can’t others do the same instead of businesses bowing down to accomodate everyone?

  5. George says:

    Just what law are the people seeking to convert their out of state license to a Massachusetts operators license? there is not requirement for a duly licensed operator who was licensed in another state but now makes Massachusetts their home, to take a written or road test. The article is poorly written in terms of communicating the facts. They quote the Registrar as saying they are breaking the law, but no one goes on the hook to say what law was broken.

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