PROTECT YOUR VOTE
Elections & Voting Resources
Are you prepared to vote?
Update your signature is the most important thing to do at this time. Ballots have been discounted at large numbers due to no signature matches. Elderly voters are the most at risk of having ballots not counted due to signature.
Make sure you follow all the instructions for filling out the ballot. Do not forget to sign the back!
Placing your phone number on the back of the envelope is optional but it is used to contact you if there are concerns regarding your ballot. Without the phone number you will have to wait to be contacted by mail which could take several months.
The most important part of the ballot is the removal tab! There is a bar code on the tab that will allow you to track your vote on line with the Department of Elections
DON”T wait until November 6 to turn in your ballot! The sooner you mail it, the sooner it will be counted!!
FELONS RIGHT TO VOTE RESTORED
If you were convicted of a felony in Washington State, your right to vote is restored as long as you are not under the authority (in prison or on community custody) of the Department of Corrections (DOC). Once your right is restored, you must re-register to vote in order to receive a ballot.
Help us let others know they are eligible to vote
Changing the law is just Step 1 in extending legal rights.
Step 2 is making sure people know what their legal rights are.
Step 3 is to advocate that individuals actually exercise those rights.
A case in point is the reform passed by the state legislature in 2009 that changed the restoration of voting rights for people with felony convictions. The law now says that the right to vote is restored automatically upon completion of any prison term and period of community supervision by the State Department of Corrections.
The Washington Christian Leaders Coalition participated with the ACLU in the effort to change the previous law which required people to fully pay off all legal system debts – known as Legal Financial Obligations or LFOs – before regaining the franchise
We pointed out that limiting the right to vote according to one’s finances was a modern form of the despised poll tax. Despite the fact that this reform was adopted three years ago, many people remain unaware of the change and believe they’re still ineligible to vote – which means they don’t vote.
The WCLC and ACLU-WA is working hard to help eligible voters understand that they do have the right to vote under the new law and is encouraging them to use that right. The ACLU has developed a new, easy-to-use guide to voting rights – “Criminal Conviction: Can I Vote?”. It’s a step-by-step tool that lets people with past convictions know whether they are eligible to register and cast their ballot.
Want to help? First take our quiz,
Encourage anyone you know who may have been directly affected by the reform in voting rights restoration to register and vote. Let them and agencies which serve them know about the ACLU’s online voting rights page. Link. And if you’re eligible to vote and haven’t yet registered, you can do so online today via the Secretary of State’s website.