Collateral Consequences News
August 7, 2014 (The Sentencing Project)
National: Bipartisan Efforts for National Felony Disenfranchisement Reform
Wyoming: State Bill Could Restore Voting Rights to Thousands
Kentucky: Louisville Metro Council Unanimously Approves Resolution in Support of Automatic Rights Restoration
June 23, 2014 (The Sentencing Project)
Missouri Expands Eligibility for Food Stamps to Persons with Felony Drug Convictions
Missouri Governor Jay Neal has signed Senate Bill 680, which modifies the federal lifetime ban on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), for persons with felony drug convictions. Although the new law is a step in the right direction, it imposes a one-year waiting period after a conviction or release from custody.
June 23, 2014 (The Huffington Post)
States Undo Food Stamp Felony Drug Bans
The California Legislature has just passed a bill that will allow people convicted of drug felonies to receive welfare and food stamps. And last week, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) signed legislation lifting the state's ban on food stamps for felons.
June 11, 2014 (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
The link between felon disenfranchisement, politics, and health
About 7.7% of voting age African Americans are currently prohibited from voting compared to 2.5% of the U.S. population. Pennsylvania is among the more progressive states in this regard; only current prisoners are prevented from casting ballots, with 2.5% of the state’s African Americans (0.6% of all races) disenfranchised, according to the Sentencing Project. When the analysis is limited to males, who are far more likely to be imprisoned, it finds that 13% of African American men are disenfranchised nationwide. An African American male born today has a 1-in-3 chance of being disenfranchised at some point in his life.
If a group of people can’t vote, the politicians who care about their health needs might be less likely to win elections.
June 3, 2014 (Huffington Post)
I Am My Brother's Keeper
An op-ed by Reverend Al Sharpton:
I could have easily been a statistic. Growing up in Brooklyn, NY, it was easy -- a little too easy -- to get into trouble. Surrounded by poor schools, lack of resources, high unemployment rates, poverty, gangs and more, I watched as many of my peers fell victim to a vicious cycle of diminished opportunities and imprisonment. If it weren't for the mentorship and guidance from people like my mother, James Brown and others, I wouldn't have been able to make something of my life.