Long-Williams tells redistricting panel ‘Englewood shouldn’t have five aldermen’

Chaundra Van Dyk
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Long-Williams tells redistricting panel ‘Englewood shouldn’t have five aldermen’ (Chicago, IL) – Vora Long-Williams wants to see order when it comes to her Englewood neighborhood’s political makeup.

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“Englewood shouldn’t have five aldermen,” Long-Williams recently told the Chicago Advisory Redistricting Committee during public comments. “How could an alderwoman do anything when the 16th Ward and 20th Ward share Halstead and the wards are zig zag?”

Long-Williams is hoping the newly formed Chicago Advisory Redistricting Committee can be the start in making a difference. The committee is hoping to have more of a say in the drafting of new boundaries now under way in Chicago City Council.

Set up by the nonpartisan group CHANGE Illinois, the commission is completely separate from City Council and began holding public hearings of its own back in June. The group now counts 13 commissioners, with CHANGE Illinois’ Chicago Project Manager Chaundra Van Dyk explaining that members were selected to represent the city’s age, geographic and racial diversity.

Van Dyk said its primary goal will be drawing a map that’s “by the people and for the people,” based on census data combined with community input.

“It’s typically done in a back room, closed process where residents don’t really have a voice in the process in how their communities are drawn,” she said. “The decisions are made and then they’re made public and people just have to live with the decisions that have been made in their communities. We believe this should be an independent process where residents have some power, some voice.”

She said the goal is to have a draft map completed over the next several months that will be ready to be viewed by the public and receive feedback from the community.

Long-Williams tells redistricting panel ‘Englewood shouldn’t have five aldermen’

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