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Tool launches to help convicted felons restore voting rights

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California Secretary of State Alex Padilla is assisting residents with criminal convictions by launching a new tool to let them know whether they are eligible to vote.

The Restore Your Vote tool, available online at RestoreYourVote.sos.ca.gov, emphasizes that Californians convicted of a felony can register and vote as long as they are not currently in prison or on parole.

Padilla said in a statement:

“I want all Californians to know their voting rights. … Even if you have a prior criminal conviction, you may still have the right to vote. Civic engagement can be a critical piece in reintegrating formerly incarcerated Californians into their communities and reducing recidivism.”

At the website, people are asked to answer whether they are a U.S. citizen and resident of California, whether they are 18 or older on Election Day, whether they are currently in prison or on parole for a felony, and whether they have been found mentally incompetent to vote by a court.

Based on the answers, users are told whether they can register to vote. Those who are eligible will be provided a link to online voter registration, and this coming Monday is the deadline for people in California to register to vote for the Nov. 6 election.

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