Ascension Parish Jail registers misdemeanor inmates for voting

Darian Graivshark
Group photo of all of the volunteers helping register inmates to vote.

If you are convicted of a misdemeanor and reside in jail, you are still given the right to vote, because those rights have not been taken away yet.

Felons who are convicted, and reside in jail, typically are disfranchised. This means they are deprived of the right to vote. However, if they complete probation, they have the opportunity to request a letter asking to receive that right back.

On October 2, Donald Hambrick and a number of volunteers went to the Ascension jail to help register inmates who have been convicted of misdemeanors for the upcoming Open Primary/Congressional Election. October 9 is the deadline to register by mail or in person, and early voting begins October 23-30, excluding October 28.

Volunteers at the jail include: Janace Linton, who volunteers with the River Road African American Museum in Donaldsonville; Eartha Rayborn and her son Pastor Richard Rayborn II, as well as Wayne Lawson, all of which are from The Christian Assembly; Delores Beaureau; Mark Peters; Ritney Castaine from the Trinity Church; and Zenas Dandrige.

Janace Linton said, "I'm very excited to be here. I love helping the community, so anytime I can help make a difference, and help to improve something for the better, I will be there when it involves the community."

The Warden, Paul Hall, is very excited to be a part of the registration, and has been given the task of helping to mail the papers that the inmates register on.

Hambrick said, "During the last election cycle, we were able to register 109 inmates. Since they still have their rights, we want to give them the opportunity to get involved in the elections. Our purpose is to increase registration for voting and get them involved."

Hambrick has created an organization called Kindcepts, which focusing on being kind and giving back and helping the community. He has decided to begin working with Ascension Voters Association to start making newsletters every two weeks that can be shared with the government and the community about what is going on in the city and potential polices, etc, so everyone is always aware. Hambrick also hopes to work with schools and educating the children about that.

Chief Wiley wasn't able to attend during the registration, but it is something that he supports and has approached Hambrick about so that they can make it happen.

Hambrick said he is very thankful for Sheriff Wiley's support, and he is glad to be making a difference in the world of voting.

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