In the today’s Boston Globe, on the first page of the Metro Section, is an article about a man who had his license revoked due to the whims of the Commonwealth’s face recognition software. Because this poor slob looked like someone else, he received a letter informing him that his license had been revoked. This is a man who drives for a living. Nice. The letter, dated March 22, indicated his license would be revoked on April 1. No advance hearing, no nothing. Then….he goes to a hearing on April 11 to provide a birth certificate and his social security card. He is also asked for documents that give his current address, which his lawyer did two days later. License is returned.
I think everyone can understand the importance of routing out fraud. What cannot be condoned are actions taken by the Registry without due process. Ms. Kaprelian comments in the article came off insufferable and arrogant:
“Kaprielian said the Registry gives drivers enough time to respond to the suspension letters and that it is the individual’s burden to clear up any confusion.” Like people aren’t already burdened in a tough economy and intractable recession….the Registry doesn’t seem to care if it puts people’s jobs at risk. I know, I know – the economy is supposed to be turning the corner, but the jobless recovery and new normal still feels like a recession to me.
Let’s see. The Commonwealth has software that sometimes makes mistakes. The “burden” in on the license holder to fix the problem within 9 days of receipt of notice, and that’s if the mail came on time. No hearing beforehand. Here’s another example for the cynical to believe that our non-elected public officials are disconnected from the average person’s day to day living. Let ’em eat cake.
This gent is now suing the Registry and so he should. A drivers license may be a privilege, but due process is the hallmark of a civilized society. Pity that Ms Kapriellian missed that class in high school.