NB Social Pediatrics and the Saint John Community Loan Fund recently surveyed 157 New Brunswick and Nova Scotia residents about their experiences with finances, banking, and ID to better understand if biometrics or ID banks could be effective solutions for people living without ID.
Eyeing the ID: Bio-metric Banking for Saint John identifies access to identification, as well as stringent identification requirements as the most prevalent barriers to receiving services in the community and were also inherently linked to other barriers, such as housing and finances. For example, lack of address was identified as a barrier to accessing an ID because government agencies require a mailing address to send ID documents to customers, but lack of ID is also directly linked to precarious housing because you often need ID to be placed on local subsidized housing lists, and to set up power and utilities. Cyclical barriers to services could be improved by addressing ID requirements and making ID more accessible.
The top three solutions identified to mitigate ID barriers were biometrics, ID banks, and an ID acquisition service.
Also available in French: Un regard sur l’identification : Services bancaires à identification biométrique à Saint John