As the New York City Districting Commission prepares to consider Preliminary Plan #1 for the post-2020 census redistricting cycle, the Legal Defense Fund sent a letter urging the Commission to revisit this map to ensure that redistricting policies do not dilute the voting power of Black, Latino, and Asian communities, and accurately reflect New York City’s population. The Commission must ensure future proposed maps fully comply with the requirements of the recently enacted John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act of New York as well as the baseline, affirmative obligations of the U.S. Constitution and Section 2 of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 With population changes in much of New York City since the last decennial Census—and, in particular, significant growth in the City’s Latino and Asian populations—the Commission must ensure equality of representation and voting rights for all New York City residents and prevent dilution of the voting strength of the city’s racial minority voters. Accordingly, LDF encourages the Commission to modify its preliminary plan to ensure equitable opportunities for Black, Latino, and Asian New Yorkers to participate in the political process and elect candidates of their choice.
Read the full letter here.
Founded in 1940, the Legal Defense Fund (LDF) is the nation’s first civil rights law organization. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Please note that LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights.