New data shows impact of ‘prison gerrymandering’ on Florida’s redistricting process

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A lot of residents in Big Bend prisons come from elsewhere.

As lawmakers balance districts based on population, should inmates count as residents in the location for their respective prisons? Or should they be considered residents of the place they call home?

Most states, including Florida, will draw from population figures that count people as living wherever they rested their head on Census Day, April 1, 2020. But many justice reform advocates deride that policy, disparaging the practice as “prison gerrymandering.” According to data just released by the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition (FRRC), it means some communities are being undercounted by thousands of people.

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