BEMIDJI -- Redistricting in Minnesota and across the country won’t take place until after the 2020 census. However, a group in Bemidji is holding a forum reminding residents that they should be informed and educated on redistricting right now.

Indivisible Bemidji has launched a new redistricting committee to advocate for fair elections and to oppose the concept of gerrymandering.

“We’re promoting new legislation mandating non-partisan processes for drawing fair legislation and congressional district boundaries,” said Sharon Fruetel, a committee coordinator. “We’re also advocating for census participation.”

The committee has scheduled community forum on districting and how it relates to elections. The event, scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 3, will take place at the American Indian Resource Center at BSU, 1500 Birchmont Dr. NE.

The event will feature four guest speakers:

  • Annastacia Belldonna-Carrera of Common Cause Minnesota, a group advocating for fair redistricting at the state level.
  • Peter Wattson, a former member of the Minnesota Senate Counsel and author of the paper “How to draw redistricting plans that will stand up in court.”
  • University of Minnesota Duluth economics professor and District 7A Rep. Jennifer Schultz, DFL-Duluth.
  • Nick Harper of the League of Women Voters Minnesota.

The forum will present information about the subject, review potential laws, cover how redistricting can go wrong with gerrymandering and what individuals can do about the effort. The event will also be open to audience questions.

The subject has been brought to the floor of the state Legislature; Fruetel said some bills brought forward would have let a nonpartisan committee handle the redistricting, rather than political entities.

If you go

What: Public forum on redistricting and how it impacts voting.

Where: The American Indian Resource Center at BSU, 1500 Birchmont Dr. NE.

When: At 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 3.