Big Crowd Expected to Protest at Anaheim City Council Meeting

Hundreds of protesters are expected to converge on tonight’s Anaheim City Council meeting as a show of anger against the council majority’s move last week to set back the city’s transition to electing council members by districts.

A news release distributed by Orange County Communities Organized for Responsible Development (OCCORD) claims that over 300 people will be massing at the plaza outside City Hall in a protest scheduled at 4 p.m.

Protesters are outraged at the 3-2 council decision to scrap a council districts map that had such broad community support it was dubbed “the people’s map” and postpone by months the city’s transition to a new election system expected to give Latinos greater representation on the council.

Moving to council district elections is part of a settlement brokered between the city and Latinos who filed a lawsuit alleging that the city’s at-large council elections prevented Latino neighborhoods from electing their candidates of choice, thus violating the state Voting Rights Act.

The transition to district elections was going smoothly until the Nov. 17 council meeting, when council members decided to exclude the map’s only Latino majority district from electing a council member in the 2016 general election and have the district wait until the 2018 election to select a representative.

After weeks of acrimony over that decision, the council majority, led by Councilman Jordan Brandman, decided last week to scrap the districts map and reset the process to choose a new districts map with at least two Latino majority districts. The process to pick “the people’s map” took months, and activists were enraged at the setback.

Please contact Adam Elmahrek directly at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter: @adamelmahrek