People For the American Way Foundation

More good news on the voting rights front, this time in Louisiana

I just shared with you that Connecticut is on the verge of enacting same-day registration, but there’s more good news where that came from – a strong stand taken on behalf of public assistance clients in Ferrand v. Schedler.

On May 3, Judge Jane Milazzo of the Eastern District of Louisiana ruled in Ferrand that the National Voter Registration Act requires public assistance agencies to offer all clients the opportunity to register to vote, including those that have remote contact, not just those that seek services in-person. Now the Court must decide whether Louisiana is in violation of the law.

New Orleans Attorney Ron Wilson:

We intend to move forward quickly and forcefully to ensure all Louisiana citizens are provided with an opportunity to register to vote in advance of the upcoming elections.

Ernest Johnson, President of the Louisiana State Conference of the NAACP:

The Louisiana State Conference of the NAACP is committed to ensuring that our most vulnerable citizens are not denied their voting rights.

Debo Adegbile, Interim President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc:

We are a stronger nation when every segment of our society is encouraged to vote, and we trust that Louisiana will come to see the wisdom of this basic principle.

Sarah Brannon, Director of the Public Agency Voter Registration Program at Project Vote:

The court’s ruling will ensure that low-income individuals will not be denied voter registration services because of advancing technology. The court recognized that the mandates of the NVRA are not limited to in-person visits to public assistance offices.

Judge Milazzo’s ruling lends hope not just to Louisiana voters but to all public assistance clients nationwide who deserve equal access to voter registration under the NVRA.


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