Sat, Apr 28: Yakima, Redistricting & the WA Voting Rights Act
A Brown Bag Lunch Community Reportback:
Yakima, Redistricting & the WA Voting Rights Act
Saturday, April 28
Yakima Convention Center (during the Yakima County Democrats Convention)
Bring your own lunch!
Fe Lopez, Latino Bar Association of WA
David Perez, Seattle U Korematsu Law Center
Cherry Cayabyab, Win\Win Network
Moderator: Mary Stephenson, Chair – Yakima County Democrats
People of color, especially Latinos, in Yakima have made significant political gains through the redistricting process. Learn about the opportunities and impacts in the 15th legislative district, WA’s first Latino majority (55%) legislative district in Yakima and the WA Voting Rights Act.
In Washington State, communities of color now have unique opportunities for civic empowerment and fair representation created by the once-a-decade Census and subsequent redistricting process. Statewide, about one out of every four residents identifies as non-white. In Yakima County, people of color, predominantly Latino, are officially the majority. These growing numbers have not been matched by a significant increase in political representation.
Underlying structural aspects of our electoral system can create barriers to full representation. One of these structural aspects is the way we create and set rules for political boundaries. Redistricting, as it is practiced in most of the U.S., is an exercise of drawing lines to favor one group/individual over another. Often, this means splitting up a geographic concentration of people of color into several districts to shrink its effective political base. Rules such as at-large voting for local office can often disadvantage candidates of color. For example, the City of Yakima has never elected a Latino to city council, yet Latinos are now over 40% of the residents. New legislations such as the WA Voting Rights Act may address these issues.
Please join us at this event to discuss these important issues and how you can take action! This is a free community event. Snacks and refreshments provided.
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.