WE CAN Inc., a group of businessmen and women seeking parity, equity and social justice for African-Americans in Chicago, called on the City Council this week to vote against a remap that would reduce the number of black wards, and it urged the 19 black aldermen to remain united on the issue.
The group’s message comes as alderman debate about where to draw the new ward boundaries given the 2010 census data , which shows a decrease in the African-American population and an increase in the number of Latinos.
The remapping, which is required every decade, would affect the 50 ward election starting in 2015. Aldermen involved in negotiations, much of it occurring privately, include City Council Black Caucus Chairman Ald. Howard Brookins (21st), Hispanic Caucus Chairman Ald. Danny Solis (25th) and Ald. Richard Mell (33rd).
“Given that we are not the minority population in this city, we should not give up anything,” said WE CAN Inc. President Florence Cox. “We should hold unto what we have at all cost.”
Having missed the Dec. 1 deadline to draw a remap, the city council would have to get 41 of its 50 aldermen to approve a new map. If 41 aldermen can’t agree on a map, Chicago voters would get involved by way of a referendum March 20 – the same day voters will be going to the polls for the 2012 primary.
To read WE CAN Inc.’s full release, click here.