Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted is lauding the signing of House Bill 359 by Ohio Governor John Kasich. The bill is known as the “Safe At Home” bill. The “Safe At Home” bill allows people who fear of being stalked or attacked, to register to vote without putting their address out there as a public record.
“No Ohioan should ever have to choose between their personal liberties, like exercising their right to vote or their personal safety. Thanks to the support of Governor Kasich and our legislative leaders that will no longer be an issue,” Husted said. “Through the Safe at Home program, established under HB 359, the addresses of survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, stalking and other crimes will now be shielded from public record.”
Husted was in Portsmouth in May and visited the editorial department of the Daily Times. He said the bill is designed to assist victims of domestic violence or human trafficking, or anyone who would have a reason to fear for their own safety.
“Your voting record is a public record. People can use that database to track you down if they want to and cause you harm,” Husted told the Times. “So anybody that qualifies, we will help them shield that so that they can vote and be part of democracy. It gives them a chance to exercise their personal freedom without sacrificing their personal safety. We believe it’s a good bill. We’ve got law enforcement across the state – sheriffs, police chiefs, prosecutors all supporting what we’re doing.”
Husted said not everybody can take advantage of the bill. If someone applies, they will be put in touch with a domestic violence counselor for an assessment before they can qualify.
“I appreciate members of the general assembly and the governor standing with me on this issue and the work done to ensure that every Ohioan can participate in our democracy without fear,” Husted said.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.