HomeState governmentSenator Keith Perry files bill to grant full restoration of civil rights for non-violent offenders
Senator Keith Perry files bill to grant full restoration of civil rights for non-violent offenders
March 1, 2021
Press release from State Senator Keith Perry
Today, Senator Keith Perry (R-Gainesville) filed Senate Bill 1932, to allow non-violent offenders to regain full restoration of their civil rights, including the right to vote, the right to sit on a jury, the right to hold public office, and the specific right to possess or use firearms, upon completion of all terms of their sentence.
“I believe we can make the process even more efficient for non-violent offenders to regain all of their civil rights and help them successfully reenter into society. This will result in a reduction of recidivism rates and costs borne by taxpayers relating to the criminal justice system,” said Senator Perry.
Nearly 1.5 million individuals in Florida, whose voting rights could be restored under the 2018 Amendment Four, must still submit an application through the Florida Commission on Offender Review (FCOR) to receive full restoration of their civil rights. This includes the additional right to sit on a jury, the right to hold public office, and the specific right to own or possess a firearm. Senate Bill 1932 waives the requirement to submit an application to FCOR for certain non-violent offenders to regain the full restoration of their civil rights.
“We are all familiar with a study by the Florida Parole Commission that found ex-felons who had their full rights restored were less likely to recidivate or commit new offenses and the recidivism rate for this group decreased significantly,” said Senator Perry. “We have an opportunity to further improve the process and efficiently restore the basic constitutional rights of individuals with a prior criminal record who have paid their debts to society.”
If every individual who qualified under Amendment Four were to automatically receive a full restoration of their civil rights without having to separately submit a clemency application through the FCOR, this would generate a potential cost savings of hundreds of millions for taxpayers.