For Immediate Release:
April 19, 2017
Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov
Governor McAuliffe Celebrates One-Year Anniversary of His Historic Restoration of Rights Order
~Announces new website to assist returning citizens, social media campaign, church tour, and restoration engagement event~
RICHMOND – Governor McAuliffe today announced plans to celebrate the one-year anniversary of his historic order restoring voting and civil rights to Virginians who had been convicted of felonies, served their time, and completed any period of supervised release, parole, and probation requirements.
Today, the Governor launched a newly designed and expanded online portal – Restore.Virginia.gov – that features stories of individuals impacted by rights restoration. Additionally, the portal includes resources dedicated to helpingeligible formerly incarcerated Virginians regain their civil and voting rights, identify resources for employment, and other transition assistance.
Throughout the next week on social media, Governor McAuliffe will also highlight Virginians he has met who have been impacted by his actions. On Sunday, April 23, the Governor will visit Northern Virginia-area churches to highlight these second-chance stories. Finally, on Thursday, April 27, he will host a restoration of rights engagement event in Norfolk where he will honor several local returning citizens.
“April 22, 2016, remains my proudest day as Governor of Virginia,” said Governor McAuliffe. “This has been an uphill battle in many ways, and we would not have succeeded without the civil servants and community leaders who have worked tirelessly to give these Virginians a voice. On the anniversary of this important milestone, the stories of the men and women whose lives have been changed over the past year are a real inspiration to continue the fight to open our democracy to Virginians who reenter society in search of a second chance.”
Since the beginning of his administration, Governor McAuliffe has been and remains committed to providing second chances. On April 22, 2016, he signed a criteria-based order restoring voting and civil rights to eligible Virginians. After this initial order was rejected by the Virginia Supreme Court in July, the Governor then announced on August 22, 2016 his process for case-by-case restoration of former felons’ civil rights. This process remains in use and Governor McAuliffe has restored the rights of 152,694 Virginians to date, more than any governor in Virginia history.