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Group works to help some Nevada felons regain voting rights

October 7, 2018

LAS VEGAS (AP) — An organization is encouraging Nevada felons who are able to regain their right to vote to make sure they are registered in time to participate in the November election.

Nearly 90,000 people in Nevada can’t vote because of state laws, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported last week. But advocates with Nevada Restore Your Vote say avenues are available for felons to regain that right.

“You have a pathway to restoring your voting rights. That’s often the biggest misconception,” said Aaron Esparza, organizer of Las Vegas Restore Your Vote.

The Restore Your Vote national campaign, a branch of the Campaign Legal Center, launched efforts in Nevada, Alabama, Alaska and Texas.

Nevada residents convicted of certain felonies have their right to vote restored automatically after successfully completing parole, said Lauren Kaufman, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union.

Beginning in January, Nevada residents convicted of certain felonies will have their voting rights restored automatically even if they are dishonorably discharged from their parole sentence.

Nevada residents also can apply to have their court records sealed, which can restore voting rights for certain felonies.

Restore Your Vote has partnered with some local agencies to spread the word and educate those who might have received bad information. The ACLU of Nevada teaches a community class on civil rights restoration, which includes information about voting rights, serving on a jury and running for public office.

The Foundation for an Independent Tomorrow, a Las Vegas nonprofit focusing on helping people return to the workforce after a sentence, also is offering information about restoring voting rights.

Tuesday is the deadline to register for the Nov. 6 election in Nevada.

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Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com

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