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Removing voting barriers for returning citizens

Florida Rights Restoration Coalition


Two years ago, Florida voters passed Amendment 4, the largest expansion of voting rights in the country, dismantling a clemency system that shut 1.4 million people out of voting and hindering returning citizens’ (people with past felony convictions) ability to move on with their lives. Despite voters overwhelmingly passing Amendment 4, legislators undermined citizens and created another obstacle through a “pay-to-vote” mandate, meaning returning citizens can’t vote if they have unpaid fines and fees.  

Ahead of the most important election in our country’s history, Spitfire partnered with Florida Rights Restoration Project (FRRC) to raise the funds and remove the obstacles that impeded returning citizens from voting.  

FRRC works closely with clerks’ offices in the vast majority of Florida’s 67 counties to pay fines and fees so returning citizens can vote. Spitfire created an integrated media and social media strategy to motivate donors (big and small) to donate to the FRRC Fines and Fees Fund, encourage returning citizens to register to vote and amplify FRRC’s work by partnering with high-profile partners, influencers and media outlets.  

The campaign was hugely successful – garnering over 250 pieces of media coverage, including high-profile stories in The New York Times, The Washington Post and “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.” FRRC’s social media channels grew by 25%, and over 50,000 returning citizens registered to vote in Florida and voted in the 2020 election. Spitfire continues to work with FRRC to engage returning citizens as active members of our democracy.  

Spitfire services employed

Campaign creation

Communication planning and execution

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Issues Covered

Civil liberties