Automatic Voter Registration Becomes Law in Illinois!

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This morning, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed the bipartisan Senate Bill 1933 to create Automatic Voter Registration (AVR) in Illinois! As a steering committee member of the Just Democracy Illinois coalition, Chicago Lawyers' Committee is proud to be part of this momentous accomplishment for voting access in Illinois.

With this law, eligible Illinois residents will automatically become registered to vote when they go to get a driver’s license or when they interact with other state agencies. The law could impact as many as one million eligible voters, many of whom are people of color and low-income residents who have traditionally faced obstacles in the voter registration process. 

After the Civil War, laws were passed across the nation to suppress the votes of freed slaves, immigrants, and people of color. Improving the fairness of voter registration is an important step in the process of healing from our history of disenfranchisement. AVR will also update and modernize our outdated voter registration system, strengthen security, and save time and money for our state.

We are thankful for the hard work of community members, advocates, legislators, and government agencies who have partnered on this important initiative. We are particularly proud to work with Just Democracy Illinois, a coalition led by a steering committee that includes Chicago Lawyers' Committee, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago, CHANGE Illinois, Chicago Votes, Common Cause Illinois, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and Illinois PIRG.