LANSING, Mich. — Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum (D-Onondaga) and Sheriff Scott Wriggelsworth (D-Holt) announced today that they are spearheading an effort to register prospective voters who are currently residing in the Ingham County Jail while they are awaiting trial or sentencing.
“There are many misconceptions about voting when it comes to those who are residing in County jail,” Byrum stated. “Until you are sentenced, you are able to vote. Then, once you have been released, you are able to vote again. It is common to believe that those with a past conviction are not able to vote, but, in Michigan, they absolutely are.”
Clerk Byrum has partnered with Sheriff Wriggelsworth to register voters who are residents of the jail ahead of every major election for several years.
“My staff and I have worked with Clerk Byrum’s Office for years to ensure that the people housed in the Ingham County Jail are informed of their right to vote and given the opportunity to register to vote, if they so choose,” Wriggelsworth stated. “People in jail pre-trial, on bond, or unsentenced are afforded the right to vote like anyone else”
With the deadline for Michigan residents to register to vote online or by mail on October 19, 2020, residents wishing to register to vote must do so in person with their local clerk. Contact information including office addresses and hours for those local clerks can be found on Clerk Byrum’s website at clerk.ingham.org in the ‘Quick Links’ section.
“Every qualified citizen has a right to vote in this country and it is my mandate to ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity to avail themselves of that right,” said Byrum. “The residents of the jail may not have the opportunity to go to their local clerk’s office to register to vote in person, so I take the registration to them.”
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