Background

Background

Background

For more information about GeoCivics, email Rebecca Theobald at rtheobal@uccs.edu or call her at 719-255-5217.

GeoCivics offers state-based resources to develop skills and knowledge for discussing the electoral apportionment and redistricting process. These resources prepare and support students, teachers, and community members with educational materials and geospatial data, leading them to engage in conversation about geography and representation. Where lines are drawn, by whom, and under what circumstances affects how people are governed, and as many people as possible in a community should be equipped to ask questions of the cartographers creating electoral district maps.

In the case of Rucho v. Common Cause, the Supreme Court held: "Partisan gerrymandering claims present political questions beyond the reach of the federal courts" [Rucho v. Common Cause]. This effectively means that the federal courts will not provide guidance to those individuals who feel disenfranchised as a result of manipulation of electoral districts. Addressing whether electoral districts are fair requires people at the state and local levels to engage in substantive discussions about the guidelines mapmakers use to make the redistricting process fairer. Explore resources on the website Draw the Lines PA, particularly the Flashes of Insight cards, designed for classroom or community discussions.

GeoCivics encourages everyone to take advantage of geospatial technology and use online mapping tools to begin to create fair electoral districts in each state. Redistricting is expected to begin in the spring of 2021 following the report of 2020 Census data, so between now and then, there is time to learn about these important topics, develop your perspective, and figure out ways to take action to obtain the outcome you desire.

Interested in the genesis of GeoCivics?  Explore this background information.

Spread the word about GeoCivics with this flyer.