FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | January 11, 2018
People with an old conviction who’d been denied the right to vote registered throughout the state
On Tuesday, January 8, more than 1.4 million Floridians with a past felony conviction regained the eligibility to vote, the result of voters approving Amendment 4 to the Florida constitution this past November. People across the state who had previously been restricted from voting went to county elections offices to register to vote.
The Alliance for Safety and Justice, an early executive committee member of the Floridians for a Fair Democracy campaign behind Amendment 4, released a short video documenting the historic day in the state and the campaign that led up to it.
“We could not be prouder to have been a member of this campaign for the last two years,” said Robert Rooks, Vice President of the Alliance for Safety and Justice. “We joined Desmond Meade and the Florida Rights Restoration Committee, the ACLU, and others out of a clear moral mandate – that when people have completed their sentence and paid their debts, they must have a pathway back to full participation in our society. Having so many people register to vote on Tuesday and seeing the impact on them and their families represent our country at its best.”
The Alliance for Safety and Justice served on the Executive Committee of the campaign, supporting campaign strategy and outreach, and raised more than $5 million for the ballot campaign, played a leadership role recruiting faith leaders, conservatives, business leaders, law enforcement and crime survivors to the cause, and co-led communications. Voters in Florida overwhelmingly approved Amendment 4 on Election Day last year, by a nearly two-to-one margin.
In 2018, the Alliance for Safety and Justice launched its Time Done campaign to raise awareness of all the ways that people with a past conviction are denied a pathway back into society, even after completing their sentence. In addition to voting restrictions in some states, they face 48,000 other legal restrictions that block them from eligibility for work, housing and more, regardless of how much time has passed since that conviction.
The Alliance for Safety and Justice is a national organization that aims to win new safety priorities in states across the country. It partners with state leaders, advocates and diverse crime survivors to advance policies that replace prison waste with new safety priorities to help the communities most harmed by crime and violence.