In 1959, Alaska was the 49th state to join the United States. It is the largest state in terms of land area. The state’s capital, Juneau, has a population of 32,739.
As of 2015, there are 35,012 (4% of the state’s population) offenders imprisoned throughout Alaska. This is more than the population of its capital. There are 25,665 male inmates and 9,347 female inmates.
Voting is the ultimate expression of the will of the people. By voting, citizens can choose who they wish to govern them. This makes sure that elected officials serve the interest of the people.
Can Felons Vote in Alaska?
Convicted felons may not vote while serving sentence in prison. Felons are also denied of exercising other civil rights during imprisonment.
Article V, Section 2 of Alaska’s Constitution states that “a person who has been convicted of a felony involving moral turpitude may not vote unless his or her civil rights have been restored.”
Moral turpitude means that an act is wrong even if there are no laws prohibiting it. Some of the crimes involving moral turpitude are kidnapping, homicide, and sexual assault.
Once an offender completes his or her sentence, voting rights will be restored. The state of Alaska restores voting rights regardless of the crime committed by a felon.
How Felons can Restore Voting Rights in Alaska?
Restoration of voting rights can be applied for after a felon’s imprisonment. Upon release, the felon will be given proof of unconditional discharge. This will be used as the basis for restoring civil rights. To avail of the proof, a felon must satisfy both requirements:
- He/she must have served his or her sentence
- He/she must have completed his/her probation and parole period
The Department of Corrections will give the felon his or her discharge papers. This will serve as proof of unconditional discharge. He or she must submit the proof to the Department of Elections to be permitted to register and vote.