ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – If someone is looking to get a birth certificate, they’re going to have to get ready to wait.
The Department of Health said that’s because more people are requesting the document.
“It’s time consuming,” said Alex Herrera.
“It’s a major hassle,” added Jeff White.
People who come to the Albuquerque Public Health Office in Midtown said instead of getting their birth certificate, they’re getting sent away.
“I had to come back twice so this is the second time I’ve had to come back,” said Herrera.
The state’s Department of Health said the demand for certificates is so high right now, they’re asking people to take a number.
“I got here at like 10 a.m. and the machine said, they said on the wall, they’d only give numbers to 91.” said White. “I walked up to the machine and they were already on 92.”
If someone tries to get a birth certificate by mail, some people are saying it takes around 12 weeks.
“It’s a little much,” said Herrera.
So what’s causing the recent rash of requests?
The Department of Health points to the federal Real ID act.
“A simple birth certificate just to get my license,” said Herrera. “Yeah, it’s been a hassle.”
Besides people flocking to the Public Health Office in order to be Real ID ready, there’s still the regular crowd trying to get a certificate. That includes new parents who need certificates, as well as first-time drivers.
“I came here to get a birth certificate so I could get the driver’s license for my younger son,” said Gregory Griego.
But Griego said if you get to the office early enough, the wait isn’t that bad.
“I had no issues,” said Griego.
The Health Department said it’s looking at ways to add more employees to better accommodate the additional customers.
Remember, your current driver’s license will still get people on a plane or in a federal facility until October 2020.
For more information on New Mexico ID cards, click here.