Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill granting the right to vote to ex-inmates and parolees.
The new law builds on a 2018 executive order that allowed Cuomo to pardon people on parole. Under the text of the bill, Department of Prisons officials are required to provide a voter registration form when the ex-inmate leaves the premises of any state penitentiary.
Before the new guideline, parolees would have to wait a period of four to six weeks to receive a pardon, before they could register to vote.
The law went into effect immediately, although in some regions of the state it could take up to 120 days after the president is signed, according to the text of the bill. The New York Legislature passed the bill in April.
Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell, who co-sponsored the legislation, said the guideline “removes one more barrier to equitable representation” in the state.
“For too long, the restriction of the right to vote has been used as a tool to silence and exclude communities of color,” O’Donnell said in a statement issued Wednesday.
New York advances access to the vote as are other Democratic states, which have also implemented similar laws.
Last month, the Democratic Gov. of Washington, Jay Inslee, signed legislation that automatically restored the voting rights of more than 20,000 people convicted of a crime once they are released from prison. And Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, also a Democrat, took executive action in March to restore the civil and electoral rights of more than 69,000 former inmates as soon as they served their prison terms.