Monday, June 23, 2008

How Convicted Felons Can Vote in North Carolina

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An organization called Democracy North Carolina is serious about getting people registered to vote in this state. I recently saw one of their flyers that explains how ex-felons and other convicts can vote.

The flyer says, "Don't be locked out!" It goes on to say that if you've been convicted of a felony in North Carolina, you only temporarily lose your citizenship rights, including the right to vote. BUT you automatically get those rights back after you serve all parts of your sentence, including probation, parole and restitution. You do not need a special document saying your rights are restored. You just register and vote like any other citizen.

And for those who have been convicted of a misdemeanor, you never lose your citizenship rights. You can register and vote, even if you are still in jail.

For more information on where or how to vote, call toll free 866-522-4723.

Good information! Thanks Democracy North Carolina.

6 comments:

RootDrsPerennial said...

Do you know which states, if any, do not allow felons to vote AFTER they have served their time?

I am asking because of how I intend to handle this election, which I find personally confusing.

If you like, see my blog www.undertow-revolution.blogspot.com, especially the post "introduction."

I'd like to give a voice to the MOST voiceless, and people in those states would NEVER have a vote.

Its been said that a conservative acknowledges the difficulty and complexity of change. That, and the fact that my dad is a Viet Nam combat vet, is where my confusion is coming from.

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

Hi Roots,

I don't know the voting rights of former felons in other states. I was pleasantly surprised to see Democracy North Carolina's pamphlet about the voting rights of felons in North Carolina.

If I were you I would contact the Democracy North Carolina folks and ask them what they know. I'm sure they know a lot about what goes on in the other states. Here's there contact information:

Democracy North Carolina
1821 Green Street
Durham, North Carolina 27705
(919) 286-6000

http://www.democracy-nc.org/index.shtml

Good luck!
Alicia

PatricktheRogue said...

According to a download pdf file at Project Vote (link here: http://www.projectvote.org/index.php?id=190) only two states, Kentucky and Virginia, completely disenfranchise all felony offenders for life, while all other states have different restrictions and rules.

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

PTR,
Thanks for the link. Based on the number of hists this posts gets, a LOT of people are interested in this topic.

PatricktheRogue said...

Alicia,
I agree, as a country with the highest number of prisoners on the planet, I think we need to take a close look at how we deny people the right to vote forever for one mistake. Do we take away any other rights, such as the right to free speech or religion? It is a travesty, piled on to the travesty of our criminal justice system.

Alicia Michele Benjamin said...

PTR,
Amen! As a matter of fact, after being incarcerated, a number of people become more conscious and educated about politics, so they would make excellent voters/civic participants.