Help Us Make #goodtrouble at MICRC on Friday 10/29/21

Over the past few months many VAAC members have attended MICRC meetings in person and remotely, and submitted many, many written comments. Thank you for the #good trouble you made! 

During this final week of public testimony, a dozen+ VAAC members spoke out on behalf of VAAC and coalition partners about the unjust practice of prison gerrymandering. Sharing passionate personal accounts, we helped the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission consider more fair practices in drawing legislative maps by taking guidance from the maps created by Promote the Vote – and endorsed by the NAACP.  In addition, many other VAAC members spoke over the last many months, and many many made public comments in writing. THANK YOU, everyone! We truly are the Voting Access for ALL Coalition and we make a stronger impact when we speak out together.


Join us in a final day of action during our VAAC Friday meeting on October 29. We will ask everyone to pull up the MICRC maps on our own computers, and Nomi will coach us so we all know how to do it correctly and make a statement together, putting RED dots on the draft maps we oppose and GREEN dots on the draft maps that come closer to what we want.  And maybe we can all comment (place dots) on a few more maps after the meeting before the end of the day Friday when public comment period closes. 

Please see these clear instructions below from Nomi Joyrich for how to make comments on the maps Thank you for joining us in #goodtrouble! Send any questions to [email protected] and we will forward to Nomi.

Can you spend 30 minutes to help end gerrymandering?

MUUSJN believes that the Promote The Vote (PTV) maps reflect our values. However, we are also aware that the commission has spent a lot of time on their maps (“the tree maps”) and that they are unlikely to scrap them and adopt a map proposed by an outside group. Therefore, in addition to making positive comments about the PTV maps, we also want to make constructive feedback about the tree maps. This can be done through the MICRC portal. Each map has its own page (linked in this document.) You can make comments and put “pins” or “dots” on specific locations on each map. These dots are color coded as follows:

 Red = oppose

Yellow= sorta like but needs some help

 Green= approve

This method of commenting can be tedious, but its extremely important. It is our hope that the most egregious maps will become seas of red dots and the most promising will be flooded with green and yellow dots and filled with constructive comments.

Step by step instructions to add dots:

-Click on the link below for the map you want to comment on. This will take you to the map.

-In the upper right hand corner, click the blue button that says “Add Comment”

-The button will now say “Click on Map”

-If you are making a general comment, you can click anywhere on the map

-If you are making a comment about a specific location, you can zoom in to find it, or put the location in the “search address” box on the top left corner. (You can put in a specific address or a city or county name)

-When you click on the map, it will bring up a window that gives you the opportunity to push red (dislike), yellow (opinion) or green (approve) . Click on the appropriate button.

-Fill in the personal information

-scroll down to “additional comments” and write your comment

-click blue button that says “Add Comment”

-after your first comment, you will have to go to your email and “verify your comment.” This only has to be done after the first map.

-Go back to this document and click the link for the next map you wish to comment on.

Below are links to each tree map, and NextVote and PTV’s guide to dotting. There are also sample comments for each map. You can put as many dots and comments on each map as you would like. We know this is a lengthy process. If possible, make at least one-two comments on each map. If you don’t have time to do that much, please prioritize the maps with an * (these are the most/least fair of the maps.)

After you make your first comment, a confirmation will be sent to your email (it might go to spam.) Be sure to go to your email and click on the link to verify your comment. You will not need to do this every time.

Feel free to contact Nomi if you want someone to walk you through it. She can be reached at: [email protected]  248-497-1226

Make your comments as soon as possible. Be sure to comment by October 29th.

(Please note that many of these comments focus on Oakland, Macomb, Ionia and Jackson counties. Changes in any county will impact the entire state, so you can comment anywhere on the map regardless of where you live.)

*On all maps: find Ionia and Jackson and add a red dot with a comment that asks to please move the prison population to an overpopulated district. This is to address prison gerrymandering.

*Add green “dots” to MICRC’s BIRCH Congressional map: (This is the most fair of the Congressional maps)

●      This map is moving in the right direction.  Thank you for recognizing that the metro Detroit area has layers of Communities of Interest and that partisan fairness must be taken into account.

●      On the whole, the diverse communities of interest throughout Oakland County need to have better representation in Washington.

●      **We appreciate areas like Troy being connected with the Rochester Area, Royal Oak, Clawson, and other neighboring communities.

●      Keeping the Troy and Rochester areas together with Bloomfield, Farmington Hills and Novi keeps our Asian American Communities of interest together.

●      Beverly Hills, Bloomfield, and Birmingham make sense to be connected together.

●      This map keeps areas of West Oakland, like Milford and Commerce connected with Oakland County along I-96 and 696 and not into the Thumb.

Add yellow “dots” to MICRC’s BIRCH Congressional map:

●      Southfield belongs more with Detroit in a Congressional seat.  Southfield is much more similar to Detroit than it is the outskirts of Oakland County.

●      Central Oakland County includes Pontiac and Waterford should be kept whole

●      Doesn’t make sense that Madison Heights and Hazel Park are in a Wayne County District, they’d make more sense in Oakland or Macomb.

●      Madison Heights and Hazel Park share more in common with Southern Macomb County than Detroit, adding them to Wayne County makes no sense.

Add green “dots to MICRC’s JUNIPER Congressional map:

●      Thank you for including Southfield with parts of Detroit.

●      This congressional district is completely contained within Oakland County, thereby ensuring the county has accurate and responsive representation.

●      On the whole, the diverse communities of interest throughout Oakland County need to have better representation in Washington.

Add Yellow Dots to MICRC’s JUNIPER Congressional map:

●      Milford and other southern and western Oakland townships and cities just don’t make sense going so far north in the Thumb.

●      Everyone in Macomb County knows that one major division in the county is M-59

Add Red Dots to MICRC’s MAPLE Congressional map:

●      This map has split Oakland County in ways that are not consistent with any of our communities of interest.

●      This Map splits Troy and Rochester’s large Asian communities from their neighbors in Bloomfield, Farmington Hills, and Novi.

●      Birmingham does not belong in a district with Macomb County, this makes no sense.

●      Southfield belongs in a district with parts of Detroit.

●      Doesn’t make sense that Madison Heights and Hazel Park are in a Wayne County District, they’d make more sense in Oakland or Macomb.

●      Madison Heights and Hazel Park share more in common with Southern Macomb County than Detroit, adding them to Wayne County doesn’t make sense, especially when the large Asian communities are in either Warren or Troy.

●      Milford to Port Austin is a 3 hour drive!!

●      West Oakland County doesn’t belong in the Thumb.

Add Red Dots to MICRC’s APPLE Congressional map:

●      Troy and Rochester Hills are similar communities and belong together in Oakland County to maintain the Asian communities of interest.

●      The Southeast Michigan map needs a lot of work, nobody who lives here would think this is good. Troy and Rochester are clearly Oakland County cities with large Indian and Asian communities.

●      696 and M-59 connect Oakland and Macomb east to west and represent approximate boundaries to the north and south; many of these communities are connected economically and culturally because of those two roads.

*Add Yellow Dots to MICRC’s CHERRY Senate map (This is the most fair of the Senate maps)

●      This map has 5 Voting Rights Act districts, the same as current.  Most good maps get to at least 6 but Promote the Vote has 7.

●      This map is close to being fair but needs to go further to give the majority of voters the majority of seats.

Add Red Dots to MICRC’s Spruce Senate map

●      This map is unfair and gives the majority of seats to the minority party

●      This map takes away voting rights of Black people in Detroit

●      This map has 6 Voting Rights Act districts versus Promote The Vote’s map with 7

*Add Red Dots to MICRC’s Elm Senate map (This is the worst of the Senate maps)

●      This map is unfair and gives the majority of seats to the minority party

●      This map takes away voting rights of Black people in Detroit

●      This map has 6 Voting Rights Act districts versus Promote The Vote’s map with 7

*Add Green Dots to MICRC’s PINE House map (This map is not fair but is the best of the House maps. Use green and yellow dots and let’s help push the commission for improvements)

●      Thanks for working to unpack Ann Arbor!

●      Thanks for making a competitive district of Midland and Bay City!

*Add Red Dots to MICRC’s OAK House map. (This is the worst of the House maps. Be sure to fill with red dots)

●      This map is Gerrymandered and unfair, giving a huge majority of seats to the minority party!

●      This map hurts Black people because there are no Minority Majority districts! 

●      This map takes away the voting rights of Detroiters to elect a representative of their choosing!

Add Red Dots to MICRC’s PEACH House map

●      This map is Gerrymandered and unfair, giving a huge majority of seats to the minority party!

●      This map hurts Black people because there are no Minority Majority districts! 

●      This map takes away the voting rights of Detroiters to elect a representative of their choosing!

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