Poles Want Their Own Ward. They Won't Get It.

Here’s the Polish community’s difficulty: they’re a white ethnic group looking for recognition in a post-ethnic political world. Polish wards made sense in the days of Anton Cermak’s “House Of All Peoples,” but since the passage of the Voting Rights Act, in the 1960s, political redistricting has been dictated by race.

The ethnic jostling for representation on the City Council has mostly been between African-Americans, who want 19 wards, even though their population has decreased by nearly 200,000, and Latinos, who want 14 wards.

But now the Poles are making a bid to reclaim the ward the lost in their last re-map. In 2001, the Northwest Side’s 30th Ward went from Polish to Latino. The old alderman, Michael Wojcik, was given a job at the CTA after stepping aside to allow the election of Ald. Ariel Reboyras.

According to the Welles Park Bulldog, a Polish delegation showed up at a community meeting chaired by Ald. Richard Mell, who is in charge of the re-mapping committee, and who is not Polish.


Original source.

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