There are approximately 12,500 incarcerated persons in Wisconsin’s county jails. More than half of that number have not been convicted of a crime, but remain in jail because they are unable to post bail.
Though many of those incarcerated in Wisconsin’s county jails are eligible to vote, at least 32 counties of the 72 counties in the state do not have a written policy that specifies how people in their care can register to vote and cast a ballot. Another 28 have brief policies with vague language dictating how jail populations can vote.
That’s according to a new report detailing which of Wisconsin’s county jails are taking the steps to ensure incarcerated people have an opportunity to vote — and which county jails are not. It comes from the Wisconsin chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and All Voting is Local, an advocacy organization which works to ensure the right and ability to vote across all populations.
For more, Jan Miyasaki speaks with Peter Burress, Campaign Manager at All Voting is Local, and co-author of the new report, entitled “Ballots for All: Ensuring Eligible Wisconsin Voters in Jail Have Equal Access to Voting.”