During those sessions, Oakland City resident Adrian Coleman-Tyler said she was concerned about the process because the city hosted several information sessions and public hearings during the last redistricting process. She also said she’s concerned to see a 14% decrease in the Black population of District 9 under the proposed changes.
“It is possible to draw a map with District 9 specifically that can have a little bit more of that minority representation, considering we already have five districts that are majority white in the city,” said Gabriel Sanchez, who added that the maps lack any mention of the city’s Hispanic demographic.
City attorney Amber Robinson said there is a demographic shift in some districts, but she said that reflects the changes contained in the latest census information.
Virginia Highlands resident Kay Stephenson said her community appears to be getting split into three districts —2, 5 and 6. Stephenson said she’s worried that it will be difficult for her community to get things done if they have three different representatives.
But some residents voiced support for the proposed changes, and they asked city officials to be intentional about not breaking apart the city’s historic neighborhoods.
Information on the redistricting, including an interactive dashboard, is available on the city council’s website.