What is Redistricting?
- Redistricting in Kansas is the process of creating new districts from which we elect our representatives in Congress, the State Legislature, and local governing bodies (city council, county commission, school board).
- Districts define the basic fairness of our governing bodies by making sure each person is represented equally (one person, one vote) and that communities with similar interests have a voice in policymaking.
- Districts are redrawn after each US Census that provides updated population figures.
- In Kansas, elected officials generally create the district maps. The procedures do not require input from the public.
The League’s position is that the best and fairest districts are based on input from the people who reside in them.
Redistricting Events and Resources
2021 Speak Up Schools
People Powered Fair Maps is a nationwide redistricting campaign of the League of Women Voters of the United States focused on creating fair voting districts in all 50 states. Our friends at the League of Women Voters of Washington State, created a great toolkit for the Speak Up School project.
- What is Speak Up School?
- A power-packed training session to inspire effective testimony to the 2021 Kansas State Redistricting Commission. Speak Up Schools are a targeted strategy to improve the quality, content and diversity of input to our Redistricting Commission. We will provide training and encourage a wide range of people to testify during the course of redistricting. These workshops will share tools to help participants find their own voice and build effective, personal testimony.
- Who should attend?
- Everyone. These schools are targeted toward people who know why redistricting is important and may be hesitant to testify in front of a commission. Each session will include training on how to testify effectively, as well as suggestion for make your talking points compelling. We will prepare a diverse range of community members to speak up in ways that matter! Contact your Local League to find out if they are holding a Speak Up School.
- Speak Up School Resources
- The LWVWA Speak Up School development team offers a tremendous about of resources to help Speak Up School facilitators better run their workshops. See the comprehensive Guidebook, PowerPoints for 4 community led modules, marketing assistance and more. Follow the links to the folders and the specific documents.
LWVK is Hosting a Map Drawing Contest for Undergraduate Students
Linked here is the requirements for this contest and how to participate! Maps are due Friday, Oct. 22, 2021 by 11:59 p.m. CDT.
Quick Explainer about Gerrymandering (original LWVK video)
Speak Up For Fair Maps (featuring Mary Galligan of the LWV Topeka Shawnee County)
More Redistricting Links and Resources
- Start here for an Introduction to Redistricting.
- Who is in charge of Kansas Redistricting?
- Links to current Kansas legislative, congressional, and State Board of Education district maps and information. (These are the current districts created by the court in Essex v. Kobach.)
- Proposed Guidelines and Criteria for 2022 Kansas Congressional and State Legislative Redistricting
- National Conference of State Legislatures’ website “Redistricting Resources” (The NCSL is a non-partisan membership organization for legislators and their staff). Other helpful links from the NCSL:
- Brennan Center for Justice:
- Radio program “With Good Reason” episode called “Gerry-Rigged.” This program provides a basic tutorial on redistricting and gerrymandering, produced by Virginia Humanities.
#KansansDeserveFairMaps Redistricting Panel Discussion. LWVK hosted an event, featuring Rep. Stephanie Clayton, member of the current House Redistricting Committee; and former Sen.Tim Owens, co-chair of the Kansas Joint Legislative Committee on Redistricting in 2010. Dr. Michael Smith, professor of political science at Emporia State, moderated. Watch the recording here.
2021 Week of Action Events
- Watch the recorded version of LWV of Johnson County’s February 2021 event “Gerrymandering and Fair Representation: What Kansans Need to Know” on their YouTube channel here
- “Line In The Street” Viewing, hosted by LWV Wichita-Metro League. “Line in the Street” is a film about gerrymandering that features the heroes and villains of Pennsylvania’s struggle for redistricting reform and the landmark 2018 state court decision to redraw all 18 congressional districts. Could Pennsylvania become a model for gerrymander reform? What can regular citizens fed up with rigged election districts do about it? See more details on the Facebook event page. The livestream will pop up promptly at 6:30 p.m. on the LWVWM YouTube page: bit.ly/LWVyoutube.
- #KansansDeserveFairMaps Advocacy Day. This is a day to contact your Kansas legislators about fair maps and redistricting. Click here to access the People Powered Fair Maps Toolkit with sample letters to legislators, talking points, contact info, graphics and sample social media posts.
- LWV Day of Action National Kick Off Pep Rally. Click here to watch the rally!