Victory in Baltimore County

Federal Judge Orders Baltimore County to Submit Redistricting Plan that Complies with Voting Rights Act

BALTIMORE COUNTY, MD – In the federal court challenge to an illegal redistricting plan, brought by Black voters in Baltimore County and several civil rights organizations, Federal Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby granted a preliminary injunction blocking implementation of the County’s plan and ordering them to submit a new plan that complies with the Voting Rights Act by March 8.

The following statement is on behalf of the plaintiffs and legal team:

“This is huge win for the many Black voters, community leaders, and civil rights organizations that challenged Baltimore County’s illegal redistricting plan. We are determined to ensure that a fair map is created with at least two majority-Black districts that afford Black voters a fair and effective opportunity to elect representatives of their choice. At every stage of this process, the community has been engaged, vocal, persistent, and timely in pushing the Baltimore County Council to do the right thing. These community voices, strengthened by Judge Griggsby's order today, are calling on Baltimore County leaders to be better than Alabama, to create districts that value the voices and representation of all residents. It’s time for Baltimore County leaders to stop wasting taxpayer money defending an indefensible plan that dilutes the voices of Black voters and refuses to embrace the strong diversity of the County.”

The federal court lawsuit challenging Baltimore County’s unlawful redistricting plan was brought by seven individual voters – Charles Sydnor, Anthony Fugett, Dana Vickers Shelley, Danita Tolson, Sharon Blake, Gerald Morrison, and Niesha McCoy – and the Baltimore County Branch of the NAACP, the League of Women Voters of Baltimore County, and Common Cause – Maryland.

Plaintiffs are represented by Andrew D. Freeman of Brown, Goldstein & Levy, John A. Freedman, Mark D. Colley, Michael Mazzullo, and Youlia Racheva of Arnold & Porter, and ACLU of Maryland Legal Director Deborah Jeon and Staff Attorney Tierney Peprah.

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PRESS CONTACT: Shannon Augustus | 202-768-9578 | [email protected] 

Read online.https://www.lwv.org/newsroom/press-releases/victory-federal-judge-orders-baltimore-county-submit-redistricting-plan

ACLU Press Release: https://www.aclu-md.org/en/press-releases/victory-federal-judge-orders-baltimore-county-submit-redistricting-plan-complies