Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Play

The youngest students along with faculty and staff will need to mask up in states like New Mexico; and President Biden calls for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign following a report on sexual harassment.

Play

Gov. Andrew Cuomo reacts to sexual harassment report; CDC places new limits on evictions until October; and a new study finds Democrats could lose control of US House in 2022 due to Republican gerrymandering.

NM Redistricting Committee Knocked for Lack of Diversity

Play

Friday, June 11, 2021   

SANTA FE, N.M. -- New Mexico is considered one of the 10 most ethnically diverse states, but its new redistricting committee is anything but.

Using 2020 Census data, the seven-member committee will redraw electoral district boundaries for the U.S. House, the state Legislature and the Public Education Commission.

Kathleen Burke, project director at Fair Districts for New Mexico, said 30 of the 69 people who applied were women, but only one was selected.

She contended women, along with people of color and rural residents, will need to rely on committee members to keep the discussions fair.

"There definitely needs to be strong Native American voices, and there needs to be rural voices," Burke argued. "And so, we have asked them to include that in their work plan; 'How are you going to accomplish that?'"

The panel includes two Democrats, two Republicans and three independents, but no Indigenous, Black or Asian members. A representative for Common Cause New Mexico said this week, redistricting advocates will push for a constitutional amendment to the Redistricting Act to ensure greater regional, ethnic and gender diversity on future committees.

Amber Carrillo, executive director for the All Pueblo Council of Governors and a community organizer for two decades, applied for the commission but wasn't selected. She said indigenous people are vital to the state's success.

"You can just look to New Mexico for any number of things, and you'll see our handprint," Carrillo pointed out. "Our cottage industry artisans contribute tremendously to the tourism industry of New Mexico, which is the leading industry."

Carrillo added given the political gains that women, and particularly Native American women, have made in recent years, the committee's composition is disappointing.

"I am hopeful that we will find some redress for the lack of diversity on this important committee, by way of our political leaders coming forward and offering some suggestions," Carrillo urged.

According to the guidelines set up by the Legislature, the State Ethics Commission was tasked with choosing three members, while individual legislators were required to pick one apiece, but they were not required to coordinate their selections.


get more stories like this via email
Unilever, the parent company of Ben & Jerry's, could land on a list of more than 60 blacklisted companies prohibited from doing business with the State of Florida. (Stevepb/Pixabay)

Health and Wellness

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Gov. Ron DeSantis is promising to block any state money from going to the parent company of ice-cream maker Ben & Jerry's unless …


Social Issues

LAS VEGAS - Las Vegas is trying to make it easier for people experiencing homelessness to get to their appointments with social service agencies by in…

Environment

BILLINGS, Mont. - Montanans are being challenged this month to eat locally grown foods, every day of August. The Northern Plains Resource Council is …


Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families is also asking the Arkansas Legislature to reconsider Act 977, which bans state and local officials from mandating COVID-19 vaccinations. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- COVID-19 has given a whole new meaning to the term "Extraordinary Session," as state lawmakers are in Little Rock again today to …

Health and Wellness

SEATTLE - Speaking to folks who are hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccine has gained a new sense of urgency as the Delta variant pushes cases up…

Ayolanda Evans Mack of the group Protect Minnesota is at the helm of a new documentary about what it would take to rid a community of gun violence. (Black Light Media)

Social Issues

MINNEAPOLIS - Cities such as Minneapolis are getting attention over waves of gun violence in recent months. A statewide group hopes a new documentary …

Social Issues

By Katie Fleischer for Ms. MagazineBroadcast version by Lily Böhlke for Tennessee News Service/Public News Service NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- After …

Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- School bells will soon ring, and Ohio county Children Services agencies are doing what they can to make the transition back to …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021