PROVIDENCE, RI – Secretary of State Nellie M. Gorbea is proud to bring new transparency to the redistricting process by launching a state legislative district comparison tool that makes it easy for Rhode Islanders to see current and proposed district boundaries side-by-side, including demographic data.
Redistricting is the process of redrawing the borders of legislative districts from which public officials are elected to reflect population changes and racial diversity. Redistricting occurs once every ten years, following the decennial United States Census.
"As someone who sued the General Assembly during the 2001 redistricting process, I know how important it is to match demographic data to proposed districts," said Secretary Gorbea. "Redistricting decisions can greatly affect voter participation. I will always push our government to provide modern resources like this comparison tool to increase transparency and encourage community participation."
So far this month, the Rhode Island Redistricting Commission has released its first two versions of proposed House legislative boundaries, and its first three versions of proposed Senate legislative boundaries. Each of these proposed maps are incorporated into Secretary Gorbea's comparison tool. As additional maps are proposed, her team will work to update the comparison tool accordingly.
This resource is Secretary Gorbea's latest effort to democratize 2020 Census data for all Rhode Islanders. In October, she launched an interactive Census Data Block Explorer that empowers users to dig deeper into population and demographic data at the census block level.
In September, she released a Historical Census Data Explorer which allows users to compare 2020 Census population and demographic data with census data dating back to 1708.