First-Time Voters and Returning Citizens Marched to the Polls During Early Voting in Jacksonville

Hundreds joined the Collective Voice Partners to exercise their right to vote

Nearly 300 Jacksonville residents joined a press conference and marched to the polls to cast their ballot on March 7th, the first Saturday of early voting. The march was led by the Collective Voice Partners, a coalition of civic organizations, who believe people should be civically educated in order to increase voter participation, political engagement and expand our democracy. Among the group were first-time voters and returning citizens whose rights were restored after the passage of Amendment 4.

“This day was about more than a march for me. I am now able to say I have a voice in shaping my own future for myself and my family,” said Muzette Thomas, New Florida Majority Volunteer and Returning Citizen. “My vote is my power and my strength. It felt great to be a full citizen and a true part of my community again after 5 years. I have a voice now and my vote speaks louder than those who sought to oppress it.”

The delegation marched two blocks to the Highlands Regional Library and cast their ballots in what will be one of the most important elections of our lifetime. We believe voters make the best decisions and democracy is best served when everyone participates and all voices can be heard.

“In a year when Black and Brown people face unprecedented voter suppression tactics, we were happy to be joined by local Floridians whose voting rights were re-enfranchised or who exercised their right to vote for the first time,” said Moné Holder, New Florida Majority Senior Program Director. “There is no greater robbery of our democracy than silencing the voices of the people, and today we said no more. 2020 is one of the most important election years in our lifetime, and we are committed to making sure everyone can have a voice and a vote.”

The Collective Voice Partners include members of the New Florida Majority, NAACP, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., First Coast Pan-Hellenic Council, The Links, Inc., Jack and Jill of America, Inc., 100 Black Men, National Council of Negro Women and D.W. Perkins Bar Association Jacksonville Chapter.

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