Jacksonville woman receives valid ID, can now receive life saving medical treatment

MARCH 25 – JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — See the inspiring follow-up to First Coast Florida’s story about Dorothy Canning, who VoteRiders helped navigate the Florida DMV to get her ID so she can continue receiving her life-saving medication.




By Rich Donnelly

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — “They said they can’t do it without an ID, a valid ID, so I’m in a pickle,” said Jacksonville resident Dolly Canning to First Coast News reporter Rich Donnelly, earlier in March.

Canning couldn’t get a new state-issued ID without an out-of-state marriage license from a previous marriage, but she also couldn’t get that marriage license without a state-issued ID.

She reached out to First Coast News for help.

The original reason why Dolly Canning needed a valid state-issued ID was to get bloodwork in order to stay on her current medication.

“I have to have that medication or I could die,” said Canning.

Despite having nearly a dozen government issued documents that prove who she is, including a social security card, the DMV wouldn’t issue her the ID.

The League of Women’s Voters of Jacksonville saw our original story and referred us to a national non-profit organization called ‘VoteRiders’.

VoteRiders normally works for voting rights but helps eligible voters in the United States attain government identification.

“An ID can really unlock a lot of extremely important social, economic and civic opportunities for Americans across the country,” said VoteRiders Executive Director Lauren Kunis.

A week Dolly Canning’s story aired on First Coast News the station was able to connect Canning and the organization.

VoteRiders brought Canning to the DMV and got her a 60 day identification so she can get the out-of-state marriage license that she originally needed in order to attain her state-issued identification, which will become permanent upon presenting the DMV with the out-of-state marriage license.

“We’re always trying to bring awareness to an ID. It’s needed for voting, but it’s also needed for so many other things in life and we want to make sure we’re bridging that access,” said Jazlyn Gallego, VoteRiders State Outreach Director for Florida.

“I’m really glad the Duval County Tax Collector’s office was willing to work with Dolly’s individual case because she needed it for her medical care,” added Gallego.

“It also makes me inspired and hopeful that we can continue to do this work day in and day out to help every eligible voter in America like Dolly get the ID they need,” said Kunis.

Dolly Canning has her ID and her medical tests are also scheduled.

“It brings me such relief,” says Canning, “I can lay down and go to sleep at night and know that I have an ID.”

If you feel that you need identification assistance from VoteRiders for voter’s rights or another reason, you can call or text their hotline at 844-338-8743.

You can also email VoteRiders: [email protected] or visit their website at voteriders.org. There is a chatbot on the website you can directly ask for help.

On the website you can learn about your state’s specific voter ID laws.

Residents in the First Coast News viewing area can visit either voteriders.org/florida or voteriders.org/georgia.