Community Groups Resolve to File Suit if Approved by the City Council and Mayor
BOSTON – With the City’s redistricting process currently underway, there are at least two proposed maps that would divide South Boston into District 2 and District 3. In particular, these maps would separate the Anne Lynch Homes at Old Colony and West Broadway Development into District 2 and District 3. If a map that splits South Boston is passed, this will negatively impact neighbors, communities of color, our seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities who live in these housing developments, and greatly impact the ability for our residents to act together and advocate for their common interests.
Proposed Map Below:
The redistricting process will determine the makeup of each of the 9 City Council districts for the next ten years, and various maps can be proposed to be considered. Currently, there are maps proposed that would split South Boston into different districts, which will dilute the voices of South Boston residents. These actions would run contrary to longstanding redistricting principles of the preservation of prior districts and maintaining communities of interest.
In response to these maps, Council President Ed Flynn and the South Boston Elected Officials will be hosting an emergency meeting on redistricting on Wednesday, October 19th, 6pm at the Condon School (200 D St, South Boston) to discuss with neighbors about where we are in the process, and gather input from residents.
“One of our utmost priorities is to keep South Boston as a neighborhood together in District 2, so that this community can continue to be cohesive and not be divided into different districts,” said the South Boston Elected Officials in a joint statement. “We will oppose any map that proposes to separate South Boston into different City Council districts, especially as it impacts the representation and voices of neighbors living in public housing developments.”
“The proposed redistricting maps would divide our community and the West Broadway Housing Development to two separate districts, diluting our community’s collective voice,” said Phyllis Corbitt, President of the Anne Lynch Homes at Old Colony Resident Task Force, as well as Massachusetts Union of Public Housing Tenants. “We urge that these maps be withdrawn, and that our community of South Boston be united, particularly our public housing communities, so that we get the representation we are entitled to.”
“We are aware of the proposal to divide Anne M. Lynch Homes at Old Colony and the West Broadway Development into two separate districts,” said Mercy Robinson, Executive Director of South Boston En Accion. “This proposal worries me as Executive Director of SBEA and a long-time resident of South Boston. Most, if not all of the diversity in Southie sits within the streets of the three Boston Housing Developments in South Boston. With most of the residents falling well under the poverty line, separating them straight down the middle of one of these developments is counterproductive on many fronts.”
“We are in opposition to any plan that would divide our community,” said Kathy Lafferty, Executive Director of the South Boston Neighborhood House. “There has been so much effort put in to unite our neighborhood – the work of community organizations, elected officials and neighbors coming together to create a cohesive community – and this plan just creates further division. We ask that this proposal be withdrawn.”
“The proposed maps would divide South Boston and our communities of interest. We oppose this move and ask the Committee to withdraw the proposal. If not, we will join with other parties in filing suit to protect our community’s rights,” said Thomas McGrath, President of the South Boston Citizens Association. “The City Council should be looking to unite our communities and our city, not divide us.”
“The proposed maps would divide Ward 6 into 2 districts for the first time, and our Ward fits entirely in the neighborhood of South Boston,” said Robert O’Shea, the Chair of Ward 6 Democratic Committee. “We urge the City Council to unite our Ward and our community of South Boston in District 2 as it has historically been, so that we get the representation our community of interest deserves.”
For more information on the meeting on Wednesday, please contact Councilor Flynn’s office at 617-635-3203 and [email protected].
Take a moment to read our Breakdown of the whole Redistricting Process here.