kyle ardoin

Jessica Rosgaard / WWNO

This year in Louisiana almost 37,000 people became eligible to vote, thanks to a law that reinstated voting rights for formerly incarcerated people after they’ve served five years of parole. But only a small portion of those people have actually registered to vote in time to participate in the statewide election.

On any given day there are an estimated 12,000 people in Louisiana being held in parish jails awaiting trial. For the most part, these are people who haven't been convicted of a crime-- meaning they retain the right to vote.

But while they may be eligible to vote by law, the harsh realities of life behind bars amount to 'practical disenfranchisement.'

More than 36,000 convicted felons in Louisiana will regain their right to vote Friday, March 1. One of those people is Checo Yancy.