Ben & Jerry's pushes petition to restore voting rights to ex-felons in Florida

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PHOTO VIA BEN & JERRY'S/FACEBOOK
  • Photo via Ben & Jerry's/Facebook
Ben and Jerry's, the ice cream company known for politically charged flavors like Empower Mint and Save Our Swirled is backing a grass-roots initiative to add an automatic felon voting rights restoration amendment to Florida's 2018 ballot.

The Vermont-based company has been spreading the word across the digital landscape, sending out emails to subscribing Ben & Jerry's fans throughout Florida and posting to Twitter, in an effort to help gather the nearly 700,000 valid voter signatures needed to get the amendment on the ballot.



The emails direct readers to PeoplePower.org, a website run by the American Civil Liberties Association, while the Twitter message links directly to SecondChancesFl.org.

Florida is one of three states that does not automatically restore felons' voting rights after they have served their sentence. This amendment would mean that the state's 1.5 million ex-felons would not need to go before a clemency board to petition to have their right to vote reinstated.

Orlando Weekly previously reported that Florida's current system disproportionately affects affects African-Americans and can be traced back to Jim Crow laws.



There's less than six months left to collect the remaining necessary signatures before the state's deadline of Jan. 1, 2018.

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