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Domestic Violence Victims can Vote Safely

KENTUCKY (10/11/2014) - October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is continuing her efforts to protect domestic violence victims’ voting rights through her office’s Address Confidentiality Program (ACP).

The ACP keeps the addresses of victims of domestic violence and sexual assault out of publicly available voter records. Participants are also eligible to vote via mail-in absentee ballot.

“I believe no eligible voter should have to make the impossible choice between his or her security and exercising the fundamental right to vote,” said Grimes. “I’m so proud that, working together with other advocates, my office created Kentucky’s first-ever address confidentiality program to allow people to register to vote and vote without fear for their safety, or the safety of their children.”

Grimes began working to create the ACP early in 2012, and the General Assembly approved legislation establishing the program in 2013. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Joni Jenkins (D-Louisville) and 18 other representatives, including a bipartisan majority of the women in the House.

Grimes launched the ACP in March, with the support of legislators, victims’ rights agencies, and law enforcement officials. Since then, she has worked to ensure that eligible victims are aware of the benefits the program provides, educating citizens, law enforcement agencies, local elected officials, attorneys, and victims’ advocates through various presentations and publications, including Kentucky Law Enforcement Dispatches.

“Your vote is your voice,” said Grimes. “Together and through this program, we can ensure that Kentuckians’ voices are no longer silenced by their abusers and attackers.”

To be eligible to participate, an individual must either have a current emergency protective order or domestic violence order under KRS Chapter 403, or be a victim of a specified offense, including domestic violence and abuse and sex crimes, in a criminal case that is ongoing or resulted in a conviction.

For more information about the ACP, visit www.sos.ky.gov.

Information provided by the office of Secretary of State
Posted by J.L. Graham
KenCo News