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Local voting rights attorney featured in Teen Vogue series

Allison Riggs is a senior voting rights attorney at the Southern Coalition for Social Justice. (Photo by Melissa Boughton)

Anyone who has ever wanted a peek into Southern Coalition for Social Justice voting rights attorney Allison Riggs’ day-to-day has a chance now by reading Teen Vogue.

The magazine featured an hour-by-hour behind the scenes look at a day in the life of Riggs in its politics section as part of its series, The Hustle, which gives insight into how readers’ peers and idols get the job done.

“Allison Riggs isn’t intimidated by much,” the article states. “As the head of the voting rights program at the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, she has argued cases in federal courthouses throughout the southern United States — and even before the Supreme Court. Riggs’ heavy workload requires her to criss-cross the country, fielding calls from reporters and listening to oral-argument recordings as she hops between hotels and airport waiting rooms. This hectic schedule can be draining and keeps her apart from her puppy, but she’s motivated by the fight to stop voter suppression and fix our ‘broken’ government. Here, Riggs shows us what a day as a voting rights attorney is really like.”

Her day starts at 4:30 a.m. — she notes she always gets up early the morning of an argument to review cases she might be asked about, refine her argument notes, and “practice pithy answers to expected questions.”

Riggs has been the face of many high-profile lawsuits in North Carolina, including redistricting and voter ID challenges. She’s also present at legislative meetings about topics that could end up in litigation — most recently, she attended all the remedial redistricting meetings related to Common Cause v. Lewis, even though she didn’t argue the case.

In the Teen Vogue piece, Riggs discusses her before and after routine for an argument Aug. 7 at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in Houston, Texas. She jokes about her caffeine fix, talks about delayed flights and canine cuddles at the end of a long day.

“Canine cuddles at the end of a long day are the best!,” she wrote. “So is knowing that even though the hours are long and the travel is stressful, what I’m fighting for is critical. Our government is broken, and we are the ones with the power to fix it. But that requires that everyone be given a fair chance to participate in the political process, and far too many politicians just want to continue in their ways, unchallenged. The odds may be against me in this particular case, but the arc does bend, albeit slowly, toward justice.”

Read the full article here.

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