Last updated on: 4/16/2008 | Author:

Global Exchange Biography

Pro to the question "Should People Who Have Completed Felony Sentences Be Allowed to Vote?"

“Permanent disenfranchisement of former felons, a practice that falls outside of international or even U.S. norms, is an unreasonable restriction that creates subcategories of citizenship in the United States. Ex-felons are expected to contribute to society as gainfully employed citizens, pay taxes and raise families, but their disenfranchisement gives them no say in how those tax dollars are spent, who sits on their children’s school board, or who represents their interests in government.

As a result of various changes in state laws, as well as extensive grassroots efforts, an increasing number of Americans with a felony conviction are regaining their voting rights. While public opinion data clearly shows strong support for reform – 80% of the public supports the restoration of voting rights for ex-felons who have completed their sentences, and 64% and 62% respectively support the right of probationers and parolees to vote, more must be done.

States that permanently disenfranchise felons – Florida, Virginia, Mississippi, Kentucky, Iowa, Arizona and Alabama – should amend their laws and practices to restore full citizenship rights to ex-offenders. In addition, in states where voting rights of ex-felons can be restored upon release, authorities should disseminate clear and precise materials in a variety of media informing ex-felons of their restored rights.”

Felon Disenfranchisement; Taxation Without Representation: End Felon Disenfranchisement,” accessed Apr. 7, 2007


“Global Exchange is a membership-based international human rights organization dedicated to promoting social, economic and environmental justice around the world.”

Website of Global Exchange, accessed Apr. 5, 2007


“The Global Exchange staff is collectively dedicated to integrating anti-oppression values and principles in our daily lives and in our programmatic work. Our commitment to anti-oppression is not just about consciousness-raising; it is also a critical component to developing an inclusive, multiracial movement that can achieve economic, social, environmental and racial justice.”

Website of Global Exchange, accessed Apr. 5, 2007

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