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After getting to vote for the first time, AFP-KY’s Nikki Rothwell dedicated career to helping fellow Kentuckians receive a second chance
FRANKFORT, KY— Americans for Prosperity-Kentucky (AFP-KY) today issued a statement of support of SB 223, which would restore voting rights for those who have paid their debts to society.
With her daughter by her side, AFP-KY Community Engagement Director Nikki Rothwell voted for the first time during the 2020 election. In a 2019 executive order, Governor Andy Beshear restored the rights of 180,000 Kentuckians who paid their debts to society, including Rothwell’s. She was then motivated to dedicate her career toward ensuring her fellow deserving Kentuckians receive a second chance to rejoin and give back to their communities.
AFP-KY Community Engagement Director Nikki Rothwell issued the following statement:
“Kentuckians who have paid their debts to society and are seeking to better themselves and their communities should have access to the tools they need to succeed. By eliminating the barriers to becoming productive community members, getting a job, finding housing, and obtaining an education, our communities will see a significant decrease in recidivism. Restoring the right for those who have paid their debts to vote will also make formerly incarcerated individuals more productive members of society.”
With nearly 95% of Kentuckians currently incarcerated inevitably returning to communities across the Commonwealth, the grassroots organization highlighted the need to provide tools for formerly incarcerated individuals to succeed and realize their full potential.
Rothwell shared her personal connection to restoration of voting rights in the Louisville Courier-Journal last spring. A survivor of domestic violence and substance use, Rothwell triumphed in the face of overwhelming barriers and adversity after departing the justice system—successfully graduating from college, giving back to her community, and paving the way for a bright future for her two daughters.
Much like graduating from college, Rothwell points to having her voting rights restored as a key driver in her newfound path in life and focus on advocating for meaningful change for others.