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Genesee Co inmates vote absentee in primary election

More than 80 inmates cast an absentee vote Tuesday for the primary election, many for the first...
More than 80 inmates cast an absentee vote Tuesday for the primary election, many for the first time.(Christine Kanerva)
Published: Aug. 3, 2021 at 6:32 PM EDT
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GENESEE COUNTY, Mich. (WJRT) - People waiting to be sentenced in the Genesee County Jail exercised their right to vote in the primary election Tuesday.

More than 80 inmates cast an absentee vote, many for the first time.

Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson said this is all part of the Ignite Program through the Genesee County Jail.

This is the third year they’ve helped people register to vote and let their voices be heard.

The sheriff said they have over 600 people in the jail right now and only a handful of them are sentenced.

That means those who are waiting for their day in court still have the right to vote.

That’s why the sheriff’s office, the Nation Outside and Genesee County Ambassadors teamed up to help inmates exercise their right.

“We want to make better people. And when you’re talking about a constitutional right to cast a vote, to learn about a ballot, to learn about what you’re voting for, that’s where a society benefits and that’s what we’re doing here,” said Sheriff Swanson.

The Ignite Program gives inmates a second chance by providing education and career training.

The goal is to set people up for success when they leave the jail.

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