Press Release - 10-7-2021

DMV news

Thursday, October 7, 2021  



October 7 is Organ Donor Enrollment Day in New York State

Almost 9,000 New Yorkers Await a Life-Saving Transplant

In honor of Organ Donor Enrollment Day, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles and the Department of Health urged New Yorkers today to consider becoming organ donors.

Today, October 7, is Organ Donor Enrollment Day in New York State.

By registering with the New York State Donate Life Registry, people can offer hope to thousands of New Yorkers awaiting a life-saving transplant.

According to the U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, 8,787 New York residents including more than 110 children are currently awaiting a life-saving transplant.

“It gives me great pride that DMV plays such a critical role in getting people to enroll as organ donors,” said DMV Commissioner Mark J.F. Schroeder. “There is no greater gift that one can give than life, and I hope all New Yorkers who have not yet registered will consider doing so today.”

“New York’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us how valuable life is and the decision to become an organ donor is one of the most significant and selfless decisions a person can make,” said Dr. Howard Zucker, New York State Health Commissioner.  “Enrolling in the NYS Donate Life Registry is a simple way each of us can save the lives of up to eight people.  Organ donation is truly lifesaving.” 

Aisha M. Tator, Executive Director of Donate Life NYS, said, “We are proud to be working with Governor Hochul and her administration to inspire New Yorkers on this year’s Organ Donor Enrollment Day to take action, to save lives, and to heal our state through organ and tissue donations by enrolling today in New York’s Donate Life Registry. “One organ donor can save eight lives and restore health to 75 more people through tissue donation. I am confident that New Yorkers will choose to give hope to the 8,500 people who are in need of a lifesaving transplant by enrolling themselves as organ and tissue donors. On Organ Donor Enrollment day, and on every day, New Yorkers can take this important step and give the gift of life at”

Helen Irving, President & CEO of LiveOnNY, said, “Over the past year and a half we have seen New Yorkers support each other in remarkable ways. Signing up to be a lifesaving organ donor is one more simple way to help your neighbors. I hope this Organ Donor Enrollment Day we are all able to come together in support of organ, eye and tissue donation to bring hope to those awaiting a lifesaving transplant.”

Nationally, 17 people die each day while awaiting a transplant, according to the federal Health Resources and Services Administration. A person is added to the wait list every 9 minutes, and one organ donor can save up to eight lives. While 90 percent of adults nationwide say they support organ donation, only 60 percent are registered.

Registering through the DMV is among the simplest ways to sign up to be part of the organ donor registry. By far, the majority of people who enroll as organ donors do so through DMV. The agency enrolled more than 5.7 million of the 6.8 million consenting organ donors.

DMV customers can register as an organ donor by completing the donation section of their driver license or non-driver ID renewal application, by completing the voter registration form, or by visiting the DMV website at

New Yorkers can also enroll in the NYS Donate Life Registry at

Other ways people interested in becoming donors can enroll in the Registry include:  completing the application for a NYC identification card, when obtaining health insurance through the NY State of Health Insurance Marketplace, or by mailing a completed enrollment form to the New York State Donate Life Registry.

In recent years, New York took steps to boost organ donor enrollment. In 2017, 16-and 17-year-olds became able to enroll in the Registry and the NYS Health Insurance Marketplace became a portal for Registry enrollment.

Under "Lauren's Law," the DMV includes on its license renewal form the choice for New Yorkers to enroll in the NYS Donate Life Registry. Customers are required to check one of two boxes about organ donation for their application to be processed. The law is named for Lauren Shields, a Rockland County resident who received a life-saving heart transplant at age 9 and who is now a strong advocate for organ donation.

DMV also offers a Donate Life custom license plate to raise awareness and support critical research. When a consumer orders the plate, $20 of the annual fee is provided to the "Life Pass It On Trust Fund," which is used for organ donation and transplant research and educational programs promoting organ and tissue donation. Plates can be ordered on the DMV website at