Bonifacio "Flaco" Aleman

Bonifacio Aleman or as many call him, Flaco, is from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and grew up in a single parent household where he recalls that crime and domestic violence were common. Flaco also recalls that most everyone in his family has been to jail.  Since he went to prison before he graduated from Jefferson County High School he ended up earning his GED in prison and also while in prison, started college. He spent 11 years in prison for armed robbery and kidnapping. 

Flaco feels that with a better lawyer or the means to pay for a better lawyer his final charges would have been different. Since his time home, he now serves as the Executive Director at Kentucky Jobs with Justice and volunteers within the social justice field serving as a board member for Fairness Campaign, Hispanic Latino Coalition of Louisville and Sowers of Justice.

Flaco is also a father of two children who are both successful high school students. Besides being a father, Flaco says what is really important to him, is doing his part in creating a revolution, so all the activities that he devotes his time will be tied to that goal.

When asked why voting is important to him, Flaco says, "under the current system that we have, voting is one of the way that we as citizens can use our power; to elect officials and as part of our collect power voting is a barging chip to create change. At least, until we have a better system in place." Flaco lost his right to vote in 1997 and has yet to regain it due to outstanding fines. He says that "in order to apply for restoration of voting rights all fines must be paid off first." 

Flaco actually never had the opportunity to vote because he was convicted at the age 18. "The irony is working on empowerment campaigns the last few years to get folks in the community registered to vote and engaging in the educational importance of how our government is structured, but I cannot vote."  

Flaco believes that former felons should have their voting rights restored after serving their debt to society. "For one, stats show recidivism is lower with civil engagement. In my experience with my friends, we share a common theme: We want to be able to participate in civil matters and processes within our state. It gives us ownership and responsibility. I think the lack of ownership and responsibility is what can create recidivism."

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