Felony Disenfranchisement

Image by Harvard Civil Rights – Civil Law Review


On November 3, 2020, California voters will decide:
Proposition 17: Voting Rights Restoration for Persons on Parole Amendment



  • In 2016, 6.1 million Americans could not vote because of a felony conviction. (Sentencing Project)
    • 1 of every 13 African Americans has lost their voting rights due to felony disenfranchisement laws vs. 1 in every 56 non-black voters. (Sentencing Project)
  • Felony disenfranchisement after a sentence was completed, especially for a broad category of offenses like all felonies, violates article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, a human rights treaty to which the US is a party. (HRW)
  • On August 21, 2020, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed off on a bill that states that demonstrators who camp on state property can now be charged with a Class E felony, punishable by up to six years in prison, rather than a misdemeanor it was previously. Tennessee is one of 21 states that punish felons by taking away their right to vote. (CommonDreams)

Map of Felony Disenfranchisement Laws by State (ACLU)

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