The Voting Access for All Coalition (VAAC) urges you to support House Bill 4276 and Senate Bill 151, which seek to end prison gerrymandering in the state of Michigan.
“Prison Gerrymandering” manipulates and distorts the voting process by counting people that are incarcerated as residents of the district in which they are imprisoned, rather than counted as residents of their home communities. The problem is that people who are incarcerated are counted as part of a community in which, in most cases, they will not be returning upon release. It is also problematic that incarcerated persons are counted as part of a district, but have no opportunity to engage in the voting process. Prison gerrymandering erodes the fibers of democracy and moral decency by siphoning political power into less-populated rural areas where prisons are located, and away from the urban communities
where people would return to. For more information on prison gerrymandering, read the Prison Policy Initiative’s PRISON GERRYMANDERING PROJECT.
By raising awareness and focusing our efforts, we can support HB 4276 and SB 151, and help put an end to prison gerrymandering. Here’s how:
- Send an email to the House Elections & Ethics Committee Chair, Ann Bollin, at AnnB[email protected], and request that HB 4276 be given a hearing.
- Send an email to the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee Chair, Roger Victory, at [email protected], and request that SB 151 be given a hearing.
- Find other organizations and individuals interested in supporting and encourage them to uplift their voice and contact both chairs above.
Thanks to everyone who spoke to the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (MICRC) during their Community of Interest Hearings through July 1.
It is not too late to let your voice be heard by the MICRC on this very important topic. See VAAC posting Act now to end Prison Gerrymandering in Michigan legislative redistricting for actions to take now.
Redistricting is done every 10 years, so let your voice be heard and express your support to end prison gerrymandering!!