FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
AUGUST 13, 2020
CHICAGO, Illinois — For far too long, people in communities across Illinois have been left out of the redistricting process. That’s why today, CHANGE Illinois and Representable, a civic-tech platform built by a group of Princeton engineers in partnership with the Princeton Gerrymandering Project, are launching the “We Draw the Lines” community-mapping drive to lift up and empower people and communities groups across Illinois for the upcoming 2021 remap of federal, state, and local political districts. Our drive will connect directly with people in diverse community organizations to raise awareness about the upcoming 2021 remap, explain how the process works, and share resources and tools people can use to effectively advocate for themselves during the upcoming redistricting process.
In 2021, Illinois lawmakers will begin changing the political boundaries for all levels of government based on 2020 census results. These maps will lay the foundation for who is elected to represent us all and whether people across the state will equitably have their voices heard for the next decade. In too many previous redistricting cycles, politicians draw districts that splinter and split up neighborhoods and communities of people with common bonds. When this occurs, it becomes difficult for people to know who to turn to when they need a streetlight replaced, or help with red tape in securing unemployment benefits, and many other government services. Splitting up neighborhoods or natural communities dilutes people’s political power and advocacy strength.
“At CHANGE Illinois, we’ve worked hard to educate people and communities about the critical importance of the remapping process and to push for reforms that would add additional transparency and community input. Our new partnership with Representable will allow us to
empower communities in new ways so they can better demand the representation and accountability they deserve,” said Madeleine Doubek, executive director of CHANGE Illinois. “Without community input, people’s voices are diluted and their concerns go unanswered.”
“We launched Representable to correct a fundamental problem with redistricting and to empower people in communities to advocate for themselves with actionable community maps and data on their representation needs.” said Preeti Iyer at Representable. “We look forward to working with local advocates in Illinois to help communities gain better representation in the institutions that are supposed to serve them.”
Over the next several months, CHANGE Illinois and Representable will be hosting a series of forums and town halls directly with community organizations to ensure the voices of the people are heard for the next decade as politicians map our future.
Participate in the campaign at: representable.org/drive/we-draw-the-lines/
For all inquiries, please contact:
Ryan Tolley, CHANGE Illinois, firstname.lastname@example.org, 904-404-2176
Preeti Iyer, Representable, email@example.com, 770-658-7979