Governor Ned Lamont signed into law Senate Bill 1202 Wednesday, restoring the right to vote for people on parole.
Alongside signing the state budget, the 837-page special session bill aimed at broadening the state’s voting rules will now allow Connecticut citizens on parole to vote in addition to only those on probation.
As of May 1, there were 3,997 people being supervised by the Department of Correction parole officers.
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This bill comes after a decade-long effort to end the disenfranchisement of people who have served time when Connecticut became the 21st state to restore voting rights for people on probation in 2001.
Previously, Connecticut stood alone in the Northeast being the last state to restore voting rights immediately after release.
Surrounding states such as Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Jersey have already implemented the restoration of voting rights for previously incarcerated people.
In addition to restoring access to voting rights, the budget implementer also includes proposals from allowing voters time off from work to allowing different state agencies to enroll new voters.
This bill contrasts the many states who are currently tightening their voting laws, creating a widening difference in ballot access around the country.
Texas, Georgia and Florida recently passed restrictions on drop boxes for mail ballots, restrictions on allowing election officials to offer water or food to those waiting in line and restrictions on mail-in ballots.