Civil rights restored to more than 20,000 ex-felons, Northam says

Civil rights restored to more than 20,000 ex-felons, Northam says
A total of 22,205 people had their rights restored. (Source: Capital News Service)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Governor Ralph Northam announced that more than 20,000 Virginians previously convicted of a felony have had their civil rights restored since he took office in January 2018.

A total of 22,205 people had their rights restored. The restored civil rights include the right to vote, serve on a jury, run for public office and become a notary public.

“Virginia remains one of the few states in the nation that permanently strip individuals of their civil rights after a felony conviction,” said Northam in a release. “I’m proud to use my executive clemency power to restore those rights to Virginians who have completed their sentences and returned to their communities seeking a second chance. This is about doing what is fair and right, and is an important part of our ongoing work to build a stronger, more accessible, and more inclusive Commonwealth.”

In February, Northam announced that more than 10,000 people had their civil rights restored since taking office.

“Since the start of his administration, Governor Northam has been committed to fairness and making sure that Virginia is open and welcoming to everyone,” said Secretary of the Commonwealth Kelly Thomasson, in release. “The restoration of civil rights is an important step to ensuring that all of our residents are treated equally.”

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