Whether you are eligible to vote or not, you have the power to impact elections, and therefore make a real impact on your community.
The 2022 election year will bring an opportunity to effect change and advance our campaign goals through the ballot box.
“The major job was getting people to understand that they had something within their power that they could use.”Ella Jo Baker
Most U.S. Citizens who are California residents are qualified to vote!
Who can vote: you must be a US citizen and resident of California, 18 years or older on election day, not currently serving a state or federal prison term, and not currently found mentally incompetent to vote by a court.
People with a criminal history who can register to vote in CA if:
- You were incarcerated at a state or federal prison and finished serving your term
- You are currently on parole, probation, mandatory supervision, post-release or community supervision
- You are currently serving time in a county jail:
- serving a misdemeanor sentence (a misdemeanor never affects your right to vote)
- Because jail time is a condition of probation (misdemeanor or felony)
- Serving a felony jail sentence
- Awaiting trial
- You are a person with a juvenile wardship adjudication
Once you have finished serving your term, your right to vote is restored; however, you must register online at RegisterToVote.ca.gov or by filling out a paper voter registration card.
If you are released from custody
If you requested a vote-by-mail ballot but are released from custody before you receive your ballot, you can still vote. Just go to the polling place for your home address or any polling place in the county where you are registered and vote a provisional ballot.
If you change your name, home address, mailing address, or party preference you must complete a new voter registration card.
Restoration of Voting Rights
In 2020, nearly 60% of California voters passed Proposition 17 restores voting rights to people on parole and addresses racial injustice, which amended the state constitution to automatically restore voting rights to people on state parole upon leaving prison.
Prior to the passage of Prop 17, California prohibited people with felony convictions from voting while in prison or on parole, which disenfranchised nearly 50,000 people on parole. California is the 18th state that automatically restores people’s voting rights upon release from prison.
We are grateful to our comrades who passed Assembly Constitutional Amendment ACA 6, which put Proposition 17 on the November 2022 ballot – Asm. McCarty (D-Sacramento) the ACLU of California, Californians United for a Responsible Budget, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, Initiate Justice, League of Women Voters of California, Mi Familia Vota, People Over Profits San Diego, Vote Allies, White People for Black Lives. ACA 6 is co-authored by Asms. Rob Bonta (D-Oakland), Sydney Kamlager-Dove (D-Los Angeles), Rob Stone (D-Monterey Bay), Ash Kalra (D-San Jose), Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles), Mike Gipson (D-Carson), Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco), Shirley Weber (D-San Diego), and Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco).