Utahns overwhelmingly voting to pass Amendment C, take slavery out of state constitution

Nov 5, 2020, 6:53 AM
Amendment C constitution...
Election specialist Andrew Haun processes ballots at the Utah County Clerk/Auditor’s Office in Provo on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY – Representative Sandra Hollins (D-Salt Lake City), Utah’s only Black state legislator, was shocked in 2018 to learn slavery was in the state constitution.  That’s why Hollins backed Amendment C to remove the provision from the constitution, which gained bipartisan support. 

In 2020, it’s likely Utah voters will approve Amendment C to do just that. Currently, it is winning with over 80% of the vote

Like the 13th Amendment in the U.S. Constitution, Utah’s state constitution allowed slavery as punishment for a crime. 

Although there’s no evidence anyone in Utah is being punished that way, Hollins feels it’s important to take slavery out of the state constitution just the same.  

“This language no longer reflects who we are as citizens of this state. As long as it is a part of our constitution, we have a number of people in our state who argue that they don’t feel equal,” Hollins says. 

She also thinks it will lead to legislative changes. 

“This is very symbolic of where we as a state need to be headed. We need to start having conversations about our past,” Hollins says. “And start having conversations about what the vision is and how do we start healing this divide that currently exists in our state around, particularly, racism.”   

Passing Amendment C to change the state constitution could also lead to criminal justice reform in Hollins’ opinion. 

“What it does is it begins that conversation around criminal justice reform and what that looks like in our state,” Hollins says. 

Utah on track to pass most of its amendments on the 2020 ballot

Today’s Top Stories

Your Voice, Your Vote

ballot count amendments utah...
Lindsay Aerts

County clerks report more poll watchers, scrutiny ahead of Utah primary

Ahead of the 2022 Utah Primary election, clerks Salt Lake and Utah counties are reporting more poll watchers are serving as watchdogs.
2 months ago
Utahns could get a tax cut....

Utah Senate passes a tax cut for Utahns, Gov. Cox says he will sign it

The Utah Senate just unanimously passed a bill, giving Utahns a big tax cut. People in the state could see $193 million back in taxes.
6 months ago
utah poll unfavorable to president biden...
Mary Richards

New poll shows low favorability in Utah for President Biden

The Deseret News/Hinckley Institute of Politics poll shows that 45% of Utah residents have a favorable opinion of President Joe Biden, while 3% aren’t sure.
2 years ago
Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., read the final certifica...

Biden win confirmed after violent pro-Trump protestors storms US Capitol

Congress has confirmed Democrat Joe Biden as the presidential election winner, hours after violent protesters loyal to President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol.
2 years ago
president trump trial...
ZEKE MILLER and JILL COLVIN Associated Press

Trump says his term is ending, transition will be orderly

President Donald Trump says there will be an “orderly transition on January 20th” now that Congress has concluded the electoral vote count certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.
2 years ago
(Some of the flags and signs outside the Utah State Capitol.  Credit: Paul Nelson)...
Paul Nelson

Hundreds participate in “Stop The Steal” rally at Utah State Capitol

Hundreds of President Trump’s supporters in Utah gather on the Capitol grounds to protest what they call the stealing of the presidential election. 
2 years ago

Sponsored Articles

Utahns overwhelmingly voting to pass Amendment C, take slavery out of state constitution