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FRRC

Voting Rights Restoration Researchathon: April 22, 2022

Research FRRC Applicant Cases to Help Formerly Convicted People Restore Their Voting Rights

Posted April 6, 2022

Background & Context

Florida Rights Restoration Coalition (FRRC) is a grassroots, membership organization run by Returning Citizens (formerly convicted persons) who are dedicated to ending the disenfranchisement and discrimination against people with convictions. FRRC believes that returning citizens can play an essential role in both strengthening our communities and increasing public safety, especially when barriers to voting and civic participation are removed. We also believe people who are closest to the pain are closest to the solution. Therefore, to foster the highest levels of civic engagement possible in Florida's returning citizen community, we are using our pro bono Attorney Assistance Program (AAP) to break down barriers and create pathways to voting for people with previous felony convictions.

Immediate Problem

In 2018, FRRC led the movement in which Florida voters approved Amendment 4 to restore voting rights to people who had been convicted of certain felonies upon completion of sentence. However, legal financial obligations (e.g. fines and fees) still block many people from reinstating and exercising their right to vote. FRRC has partnered with We The Action to recruit passionate pro bono attorneys and law students who are willing to review returning citizen cases to help FRRC determine if they are eligible for assistance through FRRC’s pro bono motion-filing program. FRRC and We The Action have begun recruiting Florida licensed volunteers to file motions petitioning sentencing courts to consider removing a returning citizen's financial barriers to voting. However, FRRC still needs support in case research to ensure that applicants are pre-researched before being referred to our Florida licensed volunteers who are filing pro bono motions so that those volunteers can maximize their time representing applicants and filing motions on their behalf in Florida's sentencing courts.

Work & Deliverables

Join lawyers from across the country on April 22nd from 1p - 3p EST via zoom to help formerly convicted people restore their voting rights.

The event will start with a 30 minute orientation meeting and onboarding training, attorneys from any state can help and FRRC staff will train you in the applicable law and research tools.

In the next 90 minutes volunteer will (1) conduct case-research using state and local county clerk websites, and (2) upload the information and court documents gathered from that research. During the 'researchathon' each attorney should be able to do the research to help 1-3 returning citizens to get their voting rights back. Volunteers can do this work from anywhere so long as they have internet and zoom access. The supervision provided is not legal supervision--it is FRRC project supervision in coordinating the efforts, assigning applicants, and answering project questions.

Project Plan

Preparation Phase

  • Volunteers will be sent case materials the day before the event

Collaboration Phase

  • Volunteers must be available April 22, 2022 between 1p and 3p EST

Wrap Up

Details to be provided at a later date

This project is complete!

This project has been completed thanks to the efforts of our volunteers.

Visit the Project Directory to check out other projects that still need your help!

Additional Information

  • Time Commitment: 1-5 hours
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Additional Training Details: Volunteers will have access to online training provided live during the zoom call.
  • Site-Preference: Remote
  • Open to Law Students: No
  • Bar License(s) required: Any Bar License
  • Required Languages: None
  • Deliverables Due: April 22, 2022
  • Mentoring Provided: No
  • Supervision Provided: Yes
FRRC

FRRC is a grassroots, membership organization run by Returning Citizens (Formerly Convicted Persons), who are dedicated to ending the disenfranchisement and discrimination against people with convictions, and creating a more comprehensive and humane reentry system that will enhance successful reentry, reduce recidivism, and increase public safety. FRRC launched the Fines and Fees Program because we believe that returning citizens can play an essential role in strengthening our communities and increasing public safety. We believe people who are closest to the pain are also closest to the solution. Therefore, to foster the highest levels of civic engagement possible in Florida's returning citizen population, we are using our Fines and Fees Program to break down the barriers to voting presented by outstanding financial obligations.

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