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Voter registration drive at the jail

Wednesday, January 24, 2018 by Caleb Pritchard

Some grassroots activists are going to jail for the sake of democracy. The Austin Justice Coalition, in partnership with its sister organization in Houston, announced on Tuesday a voter registration drive at the Travis County Jail in Del Valle aimed at inmates in the Harris County Jail that the AJC appears to want to expand to the Travis County Jail in Del Valle. In a press release, the organization says that the jail houses approximately 2,400 inmates, more than half of whom have neither been convicted nor sentenced. The effort, called #ProjectOrange, is the creation of the Houston Justice Coalition’s co-founder and executive director Durrel Douglas. “When we sat down to plan Project Orange, our goal was to reach out to eligible voters who are often ignored,” Douglas said. Starting this past Sunday and continuing for the next three, volunteers armed with registration cards will work their way through the jail Harris County Jail escorted by jail staff. Eligible inmates will be able to fill out the cards, allowing them to vote in the upcoming March primary elections. According to the AJC, the group’s ambitions don’t appear to end there. “It is important to highlight the fact that since these qualified inmates have yet to be convicted of a crime, they are eligible to vote, and unfortunately, there are no voting booths at the Travis County Jail,” says the press release. “Well, with our ambitious efforts, we hope that is about to change.”

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