NEWPORT NEWS. Va. -

A coalition of civil rights groups is launching a 15-city tour of Virginia to raise awareness of the plight facing former offenders.

Called the "Mobile Justice Tour," advocates of restoring ex-offenders' rights are scheduled to make stops Tuesday in Newport News and Hampton. The tour rolls into Roanoke and Lynchburg over the weekend, then makes stops in Harrisonburg, Charlottesville, Danville, Petersburg and Richmond, among other localities, through September. The location of a southwest Virginia stop in October has yet to be decided.

The coalition behind the tour says it wants to raise awareness about issues such as the restoration of civil rights for ex-felons. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has opened the door for non-violent offenders to vote and regain other rights as citizens.