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Hispanic leaders reject City of Houston’s redistricting map

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The Coalition held a press conference on the steps of Houston City Hall. (Photo by: Mario Salinas)

A group of concerned organizations and citizens calling themselves The Coalition vehemently rejected Houston’s proposed redistricting map and has asked City Council to do the same.

Community leaders are pushing for a map that gives fair representation and is based on Houston’s population growth.

The city grew from 1,953,631 in 2000 to more than 2.1 million in 2010 according to the census. Increases in the Hispanic population accounted for the bulk of the population growth.  The Coalition believes this map violates the Voting Rights Act of 1965 because it does not accurately reflect the Hispanic population.

With the new districts being drawn in non-Hispanic communities, the percentage of Hispanic representation on City Council decreases from 22.2% in 2000 to 18.2% in 2010.

Although the Hispanic population increase resulted in two new single-member seats, the seats have been drawn in ways that dilute the Hispanic voting strength and would make it nearly impossible for an Hispanic to win in either District J or K.

As drawn now, District J favors Anglo voters whose population actually decreased and District K favors African American voters.

According to The Coalition, using voting age population as the sole criteria in drawing Districts A and F it is unlikely that Hispanic voters in these districts would be able to elect a representative of their choice.

A list of the organizations that make up The Coalition, which include the parent company of this website, can be found below.

Central American Resource Center
Centro de Legalizacin / American Dream Community Agency
Counterpart Films
David Atwood, President, Houston Peace and Justice Center
El Gato Media Network
Fiel Houston
Greater Houston Civic Coalition
Henry Cooper, Proyecto Latino-Americano
La Bonita CDC
Lorenzo Cano-Associate Director, UH Center for Mexican-American Studies
LULAC
Mexican American Bar Association of Houston
Mi Famila Vota
M.A.M (Music, Arts, & Media) Non-Profit Organization
National Hispanic Professional Organization
National Hispanic Professional Organization Leadership Institute
Progresista Voting Bloc
Sandra Puente, Chair of Harris County Tejano Democrats
Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority-Chi Alpha Chapter
Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority-Rho Gamma Chapter
Texas Association of Mexican American Chambers of Commerce
Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services
Tre Magazine
Uniendo Nuastras Organizaciones

 

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