The ACLU has worked on redistricting issues for decades. This page offers more information about North Carolina's redistricting process, as well as tools and resources to facilitate community engagement. Use the menu below to jump to a section or just scroll freely to take a look at all of the materials available.
If you arrived at this webpage eager and ready to submit public comments on North Carolina's redistricting process, you can do that by clicking here. That said, we'd encourage you to take a quick look at the Crafting Effective Public Comments section if you have a moment. It contains some very insightful information and research findings from the Brennan Center for Justice.
What is Redistricting?
Redistricting is the process used by governments to redraw political district boundaries. Redistricting applies to all levels of government where district elections are held, including the U.S. House of Representatives, state legislatures, city councils, school boards, county boards, judicial, water districts, and more.
When conducted fairly, redistricting accurately reflects population changes and racial diversity, and is used by legislators to equitably allocate representation in Congress and state legislatures.
However, when politicians use redistricting to manipulate the outcome of elections it’s called gerrymandering — a practice that undermines democracy and stifles the voice of voters. Voters should be picking their politicians, not the other way around. Gerrymandering means politicians are mapping their voters for their benefit.
What are the stakes?
District lines influence who runs for public office and who is elected. Elected leaders make decisions that shape our lives, from ensuring safe schools to enacting immigration policies to nearly any other issue imaginable. Who lives in a district can influence whether elected officials feel obligated to respond to a community’s needs. The district boundaries are in place for the next ten years, and their impacts can last well beyond that.
Why you should get involved?
Redistricting has been used to rob Black and Brown communities of political power. By fully participating in and monitoring the upcoming redistricting process, historically underrepresented and marginalized communities will have the opportunity to elect candidates of their choice and voice their needs and interests. District boundaries are generally drawn once every 10 years, so this process has long-term effects on community representation.
Fair districts allow voters to elect candidates who share their values and vote out ones who do not. In short, it allows your vote to count. In the past, gerrymandering has denied North Carolinians, especially our Black and Brown communities the opportunity to elect candidates of their choice in multiple elections. This voter suppression deprives Black and Brown voters of a voice in our democracy.
It’s important for the public to offer comments now. If lawmakers end up drawing unfair maps, those comments will demonstrate how lawmakers were properly informed but disregarded guidance about what fair maps should look like. We need substantive public comment to hold lawmakers accountable.
This page contains a compilation of resources and materials related to North Carolina's redistricting process. Most of these materials were created by partner organizations. Below, there are resources to help community members learn more about the redistricting process, offer public comments, and even create maps to share with lawmakers as redistricting options.
Questions or inquiries related to these materials should be sent to communications [@] acluofnc.org.