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Source and Scope of Public Health Legal Powers

Raysor, et al. v. DeSantis


Raysor, et al. v. DeSantis (U.S. Supreme Court, July 16, 2020): The Supreme Court ordered that it would not disturb an eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that left in effect a law requiring former felons in Florida to pay all fines and fees owed before voting. After Florida citizens voted to restore felons’ right to vote in 2018, the Florida legislature required payment of fees and fines before voting rights are restored. The Court’s decision, released 4 days before a voter registration deadline in Florida, meant that felons who were otherwise registered and eligible to vote were not permitted to do so in the August 2020 primary if fees and fines had not yet been paid. Barring unexpected legislative action, these individuals will not be able to vote in the general election in November 2020. Voting restrictions aimed at further disenfranchising populations with little economic means and who are already underrepresented in the electoral process are generally associated with reduced health outcomes in the community. Such barriers contribute to a less representative government which may be less likely to address health disparities. Read the Supreme Court order here. Read the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion here

View all cases in the Judicial Trends in Public Health – September 14, 2020.

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