VILLA PARK- State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) is excited to announce qualifying Illinois veterans will now have easy access to Veteran Identification Cards or VICs starting November.
"Illinois veterans will have nationwide standardized method to prove their military service without the added risks of identity theft," Cullerton said. "Our military men and women should not have to jump through hoops to receive benefits they qualify for. This small step will honor our military's bravery and serve as a reminder that we must never forget the sacrifices they have made for our great nation."
Currently, many veterans carry copies of their military discharge paperwork or other personal documents to redeem corporate discounts and services which make them more vulnerable to identify theft and other fraudulent activity.
Illinois currently allows veterans who have received an Honorable or General under Honorable Conditions discharge to add a veteran's designation on their driver's license or ID card.
Cullerton believes a nationwide identification card gives Illinois veterans a standardized method to verify military service, especially when they travel across state lines.
The application process will be online on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' website. Veterans will need to upload a valid government ID such as passports and drivers licenses, a recent photograph for the Veteran ID Card and will need to provide details about their military service. The VA will mail the ID card directly to the veteran.
"It is ridiculous to expect our nation's heroes to carry DD-214 discharge papers to prove their veteran status," Cullerton said. "This standardized identification card is a simple way for us to honor the service and sacrifices our veterans have made for our country."
Cullerton will release more information as it becomes available. DuPage County veterans are welcome to call his office at (630) 903-6662 with any questions on the application process.