Making Democracy Work
Redistricting: Speak Up Schools

LWVWA is supporting Local Leagues and ally organizations to host workshops called Speak Up Schools.  Speak Up Schools are a targeted strategy to improve the quality, content and diversity of input to our 2021 Washington State Redistricting Commission. These sessions will share tools to help participants find their own voice and build effective, personal testimony. Our goal is to have over 2000 people testify. Sign up for a Speak Up School below. 

Issue Team Chair: Alison McCaffree, 720-6813
Interested in getting involved with this topic? Click here! 

July 19, 2022 - On 11/16/21, the commission passed the responsibility to decide the maps to the Courts but did end up producing maps they negotiated passed the deadline. On 12/3/21, the Courts decided to accept the maps. On 2/8/22 The Legislature passed technical updates to the maps suggested by county auditors and election officials.  On 2/23/22 The commission agreed on a settlement on two lawsuits that attested they did not follow the Open Public Meetings Act. Two more lawsuits in federal court based on VRA and U.S Constitution Amendment 14 challenges are ongoing through 2023. The maps will not change for the November 2022 elections. 

Thank you to everyone who attending LWVWA Speak Up Schools - we had over 700 individuals attend - many who testified for the first time in front of the Washington State Redistricting Commission. 

Hear from Rena Connell about her experience testifying before the Redistricting Commission (3.5 minutes). Thanks to KSER and LWV Magazine on the Air for this interview. Need more assistance? See our Speak Up School videos. Click the link to see these 20 min presentations.

1. Why Redistricting is important & why you should testify —View:  Video  | Slides  , Spanish: Video | Slides

2. How to write Testimony—View Video  |  Slides  , Spanish: Video | Slides

3. How to Testify  —View:  Video | Slides ,  Spanish: Video | Slides

As of 11/9/21, Verbal Testimony Count  = 439 / 2000 = 22% to our goal. 

While we did not meet our testimony goal, we are still very proud of the outreach and engagement with the Washington State Redistricting Commission by community members. As of 10/28/21 the Commission reports:

  • 2,230 comments on the draft maps
  • 5,000+ emailed comments
  • 1,657 maps begun by residents, 30+ submitted
  • 15,905 hours of YouTube Content viewed
  • 750,000+ people have watch Commission meetings
  • 334,000 Instagram accounts have seen Commission content
  • 200M views of Commission Facebook page


September 2021, the LWVWA redistricting team released their final maps based on communities of interest. Please see our Redistricting Map page for more details on input and maps. 

Despite not meeting the deadline, The Redistricting Commission has also released maps. You can find them on the Commission website. or our  Redistricting Map page.

More on the 2021 Speak up Schools

People Powered Fair Maps is a nationwide redistricting campaign of the League of Women Voters of the United States focused on creating fair voting districts in all 50 states. Here at the League of Women Voters of Washington State, a major way we work to redistricting reform is our Speak Up School project. 


  • Put on 10-15 Speak Up Schools all over the state between February - May 2021
    DONE. We held 8 Complete Speak Up Schools,  5 additional partial schools including Redistricting 101 sessions and many other online talks reaching over 3000 registrations and 700 individuals.  
  • Have over 2000 people testify to the commission during public meeting in mid-2021
  • Hold the 2021 Redistricting Commission accountable to the people of Washington by publicly documenting the desires of the residents of our state for voting districts that represent them. See our maps page where we are doing draft CD and LD maps. 
What is a Speak up School? 

A power-packed training session to inspire effective testimony to the 2021 Washington State Redistricting Commission. Find out more about the commission in our Census & Redistricting Tool Kit. Speak Up Schools are a targeted strategy to improve the quality, content and diversity of input to our Redistricting Commission. The 2021 Washington State Redistricting Commission will be hosting public input meeting during the spring and fall of 2021. In the past, testimony at these hearings has not been coherent, powerful or compelling and make it difficult for commissioners to take action on the input. The League want to change this in 2021. We will provide training and encourage a wide range of people to testify. These workshops will share tools to help participants find their own voice and build effective, personal testimony. 

Who should attend?
Everyone. These schools are targeted toward people who know why redistricting is important and may be hesitant to testify in front of a commission. Each session will include training on how to testify effectively, as well as suggestion for make your talking points compelling. We will prepare a diverse range of community members to speak up in ways that matter! Contact your Local League to find out if they are holding a Speak Up School. 

Speak Up School Resources

The LWVWA Speak Up School development team offers a tremendous about of resources to help Speak Up School facilitators better run their workshops. See the comprehensive Guidebook, powerpoints for 4 community led modules, marketing assistance and more. Follow the links to the folders and the specific documents.

Main Speak Up School Resources Folder

Speak Up School Guidebook

SUS Logos

Module Powerpoints and handouts

Speak Up School Host Training Recordings:
Part 1 Intro,
       Part 2 Key Speaker,       Part 3 Data Lenses,       Part 4 Testimony,       Part 5 Testify,       Part 6 Conclusion.

Apply for a Speak Up School Grant from the LWVWA Civic Ed Fund

In Washington State we are activating people around redistricting through our Speak Up Schools. Local Leagues can apply for a grant of $350 to put on your Speak Up School through LWVWA's People Powered Fair Maps grant from LWVUS.  Grant supported Speak Up Schools must be completed by June 2021. A final report is due within 3 months of the completion of your event. 

Download Pre-Approved Grant Application Here

Download Budget Template. 

Please email both your grant application and your proposed budget and then the final report to Alison McCaffree @ You will be notified of your acceptance after the LWVWA Civic Education Fund reviews and accepts it; in approximately 4 weeks depending on their meeting schedule. You will receive your funds within 30 days of acceptance. 

How do I learn more?

The LWVWA statewide Speak Up School team is here to assist any organization to host a school. Click below to download the detailed information on how to put on a school, who to partner with and what benefits you, your organization and your participant will hope to receive. This is a wonderful opportunity to strengthen partnerships with diverse coalition of group and individuals who are concerned with the create representative maps - and who are committed to testifying. 

Who can I contact?

For questions please contact Issue Chair, Alison McCaffree at or 253-720-6813

      There are a number of other areas of Democracy that we are working on.  Please see Campaign Finance & Government Ethics, Elections, and Election Security.

      Tuesday, September 21 – Commissioners will each release their proposed state legislative district map.

      Tuesday, September 28 – Commissioners will each release their proposed congressional district map.

      The League of Women Voters of Washington is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization.
      The League of Women Voters of Washington Education Fund is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. LWVWA Education Fund contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law. The League of Women Voters Education Fund does not endorse the contents of any web pages to which it links.

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