Every 10 years, states redraw the boundaries of legislative districts based on data collected by the Census Bureau. While New Yorkers expect the redistricting process to give them a voice and increase political participation, politicians abuse their power and manipulate district lines, benefiting themselves. Common Cause New York is working to restore balance to district maps by guaranteeing that they are free of favoritism or political influence.
Common Cause New York has been fighting for fair and objective redistricting for over a decade.
In 2011, Common Cause New York released the only set of non-partisan redistricting maps for both the state legislature and Congress, which were widely hailed by the media as fair and viable alternatives to the legislature’s official proposals. Ultimately, our maps were used as templates for those now in place.
During the 2012-2013 New York City Council redistricting cycle, Common Cause New York offered neighborhood workshops, ensuring residents understood the redistricting process and were able to contribute to setting political boundary lines.
In 2021-2022, Common Cause New York trained partners and advocates on drawing community maps and on meaningful participation in the redistricting process ahead of New York Redistricting Commission’s public hearings. After the New York State Court of Appeals invalidated the enacted gerrymandered Congressional and State Senate maps drawn by the Legislature and appointed a Special Master to redraw New York’s districts, Common Cause NY responded and released our own proposed Congressional and Senate maps. We filed our maps with the Steuben County Supreme Court and the court-appointed Special Master.
Time and again we have been adamant that politicians must be removed from the redistricting process to ensure fair and equitable maps. Common Cause will continue to encourage the adoption of independent redistricting.