Updated: Overflow rooms were added after hundreds showed up and to speak out at the Texas Legislative Committee on Redistricting public input session at 4 p.m. on Sept. 12, at the Port San Antonio Boardroom at 907 Billy Mitchell Blvd.
The Bexar County Voting Rights Coalition brought three buses filled with people to the hearing, one bus each from San Antonio’s East Side, West Side and North Side. The coalition is led by the Neighborhood First Alliance and includes the San Antonio NAACP, the Cesar Chavez Legacy Foundation, the Holy Spirit Sisters, the League of Women Voters, Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, and other groups.
“This is a grass roots effort to protect the right to vote,” said community activist T.C. Calvert who leads the Neighborhood First Alliance. “The State of Texas has continued to violate the Voting Rights Act by gerrymandering black and Hispanic neighborhoods. We need fair maps.”
Watch NOWCastSA video of the crowd before the hearing began:
The Texas Legislature will hold public hearings across the state over the next year, and through your public testimony, you can influence how it will draw district boundaries. By speaking up at the Redistricting Committee’s public hearings over the next year, you can influence how the Legislature redraws district boundaries and help ensure fair representation for every person.
The state says it will stream and record video of the session. Click here to watch video of the Sept. 10 Redistricting hearing in Austin.
Thanks to support from the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber and the Texas League of Women Voters, you can replay NOWCastSA videos at this link to learn more about how to testify at the hearings and why it matters.