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Prison gerrymandering gives extra political power to legislators who have prisons in their districts. We put numbers on the problem and sparked a movement to protect our democratic process from the overgrown prison system.

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Halifax County, Virginia

According to the 2000 Census, Halifax County, Virginia has a population of 37,355 people. Of those, 22,531 (59%) are White, 14,204 (38%) are Black, and 458 (1%) are Latino[1]. However, 386 (or 1% of the 37,355 people) are not residents by choice but are people in prison.

Even though prisoners cannot participate in the local community, the Census Bureau nevertheless counts them as residents of the county where they are incarcerated.

A more accurate description would not include the prisoners. This would give Halifax County a population of 36,969 with a demographic that is 61% White, 38% Black, and 1% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Total 37,355 386 36,969
White 22,531 92 22,439
Black 14,204 293 13,911
Latino 458 2 456


[1]The numbers for Whites, Blacks and Latinos may not add up to the total number because we have not included racial groups other than Whites and Blacks and because the Census Bureau considers "Latino" to be an ethnicity, not a race. Most of the people reported as being Latino are also counted as being White or Black.

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