‘We are trying to do the best we can with the resources we have’ – DPS rolls out app feature to help speed up REAL ID process

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – State officials announced on Tuesday that the Mobile ID app is expanding, allowing Oklahomans to upload required documents before they show up to their REAL ID appointment.

However, booking an appointment is next to impossible for Oklahomans.

“Some people notice at the last minute, and then, their time is up,” Angel Allen of Oklahoma City said.

Angel Allen of Oklahoma City tells KFOR she’s out of time and patience while trying to get her hands on a REAL ID.

“It’s just all a mess,” Allen said.

“We are trying to do the best we can with the resources we have,” said Sarah Stewart, Media Relations for the Oklahoma Department of Public Safety.

Tuesday, DPS launched a new feature on the Mobile ID. The app is free in the app store till at least April. Now, Oklahomans can upload the required documents – birth certificate, passport, Social Security card and two proofs of residency – right from your phone. Mobile ID users can use the app’s REAL ID checklist to confirm they have the correct documents, upload them using their smartphone camera and answer a brief questionnaire.

Oklahoma became the second state in the nation to implement Mobile ID in 2019.

Photo of REAL ID approved Oklahoma license
Photo of REAL ID approved Oklahoma license

“Those documents will already be in the system when you visit a DPS location or a tag agency,” Stewart said. “They will already have those, but you still have to bring the documents with you.”

However, to get a REAL ID, you still must make an appointment online, and you still must have the required documents in hand when you arrive. Employees will check the validity of your documents. According to Stewart, this will speed up the in-person visit by 40 percent.

For some tag agencies, the next available appointment is in 60 days.

Victoria Longoria, a young mother, says she doesn’t have the time. Her ID is expired, so she waited seven hours in the cold outside a tag agency for her ID to be renewed.

“If I didn’t get this today, I couldn’t get a job,” Victoria Longoria of Oklahoma City said. “They make it too hard to try.”

DPS admits to KFOR COVID-19 has closed several offices and budget cuts were detrimental.

Gov. Kevin Stitt released the following statement Tuesday regarding the update:

“The team at the Department of Public Safety has worked tirelessly to update systems and adapt to the challenges presented by COVID-19 in order to implement REAL ID. The updated Mobile ID app will help streamline the process and ensure Oklahomans can begin the process of pre-enrolling in the critical program.”

Gov. Kevin Stitt

Mobile ID is a digitized version of a physical driver’s license that allows users to safely store their identification on a smartphone. While the digital identification is accepted in many instances, it does not currently replace a physical identification card for all situations, such as interactions with law enforcement or the Transportation Security Administration.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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