Welcome to GeoCivics

Welcome to

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Prepare for the Civic Season with a variety of activities and events

 

If you have 15 minutes

Learn about the geography of your voting districts. Everyone votes with the whole state for members of the United States Senate. On average, your member of the House of Representatives has the voice for 761,168 of your neighbors. Locate your district using GovTrack. Then visit your state's website to look up other legislative bodies who represent you in the state legislature, county or parish commission, city or town council, school board, or other special districts. Examine the records of these officials prior to the upcoming November election. 

If you have 30 minutes

Visit the GeoCivics resource page for your state where you will find links to information from Ballotpedia on redistricting procedures and data from the United States Census Bureau. Look under "Organizations and Resources".  If your state has a redistricting website, you may find a link to that information as well. Can you understand the criteria used to make decisions about how to draw districts? Is it clear who is in charge of drawing the districts? If not, you may need to find a group that will help you navigate this information and advocate for fair representation.

If you have an hour

You want to submit a map to your redistricting commission, but you are not quite sure where to start. Watch this video from the Redistricting Data Hub explaining one approach to local redistricting. After exploring various redistricting tools (or using one provided by your local redistricting commission) and drawing your map, provide a guide to viewers as to what is important. This example is from Carlos Perez for the El Paso County Commission in Colorado. For a state perspective, check out this report from the Wisconsin Fair Maps Project.

REDISTRICTING RESOURCES FOR:

 

How can I engage with REDISTRICTING?

  1. UNDERSTAND the US Census and the process for apportionment and redistricting
  2. KNOW THE RULES - be knowledgeable about YOUR state’s redistricting process
  3. DISCUSS key criteria for drawing electoral districts
  4. EXPLAIN your community
  5. CREATE your own congressional, state legislative, or local districts using free online mapping tool
  6. CRITIQUE existing maps
  7. SHARE your knowledge
    • Encourage your family and friends to be active participants in the redistricting process

Students exploring Ohio Giant Map and Flashes of Insight Activity

Where can I find more details about the redistricting process in my state?

Please contact Rebecca Theobald in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies for more information.

GeoCivics © 2017 by Rebecca Theobald is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0