ACLU and Announce Partnership To Raise Awareness Of Felony Disfranchisement

The American Civil Liberties Union and's "Business and Building" Community are proud to announce the launch of their partnership to raise awareness of the devastating effects of felony disfranchisement on this country’s African-American community. The partnership fuses the strengths of each organization – the ACLU’s longtime involvement in states which set policy on this issue, and’s broad audience and close ties with African-American leaders – to give this issue greater visibility within the black community in this historic election year.

“At a time when many are focused on primary races, candidates and debates, it is important to remember that so many individuals in this country still do not even have the right to vote. We are proud to form this relationship with the ACLU to place a spotlight on an issue that not only determines the real winners and losers on the campaign trail, but also reflects an aspect of America's racial divide that many wish to ignore,” said Cedric Muhammad, Publisher of and Convener of its Business and Building Community, a diverse group of entrepreneurs, professionals, activists, artists, intellectuals and students drawn from the website's community.

In the United States, one out of every seven - or 1.4 million - African-American men is disfranchised and cannot vote due to a felony conviction. This rate is nearly seven times the national disfranchisement rate of one in 41 adults. The ACLU and have developed a multi-faceted, nationwide plan to raise awareness of this critical voting rights issue that includes targeted projects in California, Florida and Mississippi; the recruitment of prominent African-Americans to address this issue at rallies, conferences and in public service announcements; and the launch of a large-scale guerrilla, viral, and street campaign to engage youth that features street teams, t-shirts, music, videos, and the ACLU documentary, “Democracy’s Ghosts.”

To learn more about the work of the ACLU and to restore voting rights to people with felony convictions, and their partnership on felony disfranchisement please visit:

About: The "Business and Building" Community is a diverse group of entrepreneurs, professionals, activists, artists, intellectuals and students established in October of 2006, drawn from the website's community. "Business and Building" is launching Four Initiatives in the following areas in 2008: Business and Investment; Community Development; Political Action; and International Affairs. The issue of Felon Disenfranchisement falls within the area of Political Action.

To Follow The Latest Movements of's "Business and Building" Community Tune In To "The Cedric Muhammad and Black Coffee Program" at The Black Coffee Channel.

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Friday, April 4, 2008