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Building Bridges Radio: The New Jim Crow: Felon Disenfranchisement plus New State Laws Impede Franchise

      Building Bridges: Your Community and Labor Report
                                  National Edition

         Produced by Ken Nash and Mimi Rosenberg
The New Jim Crow:

Purging the African American Vote by Felon Disenfranchisement

Jazz Hayden, Riverside Church Prison Ministry Campaign
To End The New Jim Crow

Today, nearly five million Americans are barred by law from voting at all because of a felony conviction. (A felony is any crime that carries a sentence of a year or more in prison.)  More than 1 in 50 adults can’t vote. And because of the racial imbalance in the criminal justice system, 1.4 million black men are disenfranchised. That’s 13 percent of the African-American male population, a figure seven times the national average. The laws vary from state to state. For example, in Maine, a convicted murderer may vote while still in prison, but in Virginia, someone arrested for selling drugs when he was 18 may never vote again. An American suffrage movement– voting rights for felons — could make a considerable difference in upcoming elections.
Another Aspect of the New Jim Crow: Impeding the Franchise
Lee Roland, counsel with the Democracy Program’s Voting Rights
and Elections Team at the Brennan Center for Justice

Ahead of the 2012 elections, there’s been a wave of state legislation tightening
restrictions on voting that has swept across the country. It’s been estimated that
more than 5 million Americans could be affected by the new rules in place this year – which is a number larger than the margin of victory in two of the last 3 presidential elections.  Lee Roland counsel discusses this manifestation of the new Jim Crow. 
To Download or listen to this 27:15 minute
program, go to our website

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