Wednesday, April 20, 2022
Leana Cortez, Director of Advocacy
If one were to describe the 2020-2021 San Diego Redistricting process, “equitable” would scarcely be used. The current structure of the process enforces the power of wealthy, single-family homeowners while leaving San Diego’s youth and BIPOC communities vastly underrepresented.
As youth ourselves, OTTA United endeavored to disrupt this structure and begin our research for reform. These measures included:
Changing the appointing authority.
Partial district detachment.
Implementation of a two-part selection process.
These proposed changes would simply bring San Diego’s City redistricting process up to par with our neighboring cities and the state.
Aashika Srinivas, policy analyst at OTTA United, brought these reform suggestions to the San Diego City Council Rules Committee on April 20th, 2022. She did a wonderful job presenting during non-agenda public comment and caught the attention of two councilmembers.
Councilmember Chris Cate commented that he was "encouraged by some of [Aashika's] ideas." Council President Sean Elo-Rivera was "intrigued by the presentation," "appreciate[d] the level of civic engagement of the youth who presented," and thanked us for "having engaged in the redistricting process."
With this encouragement, OTTA United will continue to meet with councilmembers to figure out the further development and implementation of such reforms to ensure just representation occurs for the diverse city of San Diego.