As we look at the world and the polarizing effects of income inequalities, migration, war, poverty, gender-based violence, we must reflect on the factors that serve as barriers or facilitators to social inclusion. There are many efforts taking root that are promoting more inclusive and more tolerant approaches to difference. Some of the most interesting initiatives promoting social inclusion are being funded by the Open Society Foundations.
Think about how these initatives can also include and promote inclusion on the dimension of disability as diversity. Consider the possibilities of adding a disability dimension to the social inclusion policies and recommendation outlined in the following programs.
Living Together: Projects Promoting Inclusion in 11 EU Cities
Depending on the policies and history of a given country, strategies to address challenges to diversity and integration differ across cities in Europe. In examining the effectiveness of local government integration policies and practices in 11 EU cities, the project has found that integration and meaningful interaction between groups is taking place daily at the local level across almost all sectors of everyday life.
However, discrimination and prejudice still remain an important barrier, which city officials and civil society are working hard to overcome. In recognition of this and the importance of the local level in fostering a greater and inclusive sense of belonging and identity, the At Home in Europe Project aims to highlight participatory and innovative practices which promote social inclusion and nondiscrimination at the city level.
Living Together is a compilation of projects that promote inclusion identified during the“Muslims in EU Cities” research, undertaken in the following 11 cities: Antwerp (Belgium), Copenhagen (Denmark), Marseille and Paris (France), Berlin and Hamburg (Germany), Amsterdam and Rotterdam (the Netherlands), Stockholm (Sweden), and Leicester and Waltham Forest, London (United Kingdom).
The guide presents a mixture of local and city projects, policies and practices (past and present) which have sought to improve opportunities for the inclusion of minority and marginalized groups, and to challenge inequalities, discrimination and marginalization often faced by social excluded groups in the areas of:
- Identity, belonging and interaction
- Employment and training
- Policing and security
- Participation and citizenship
- The role of the media
By highlighting good practices, the At Home in Europe project hopes to encourage learning, dialogue and inspiration across cities, sectors and communities. Intended as a resource for governments, local authorities, policymakers, nongovernment organisations and charities, the guide will be revised and updated on a regular basis to reflect new efforts and initiatives emerging from the 11 cities.
The report is available for download below in English. French and German copies of the report will be available soon.
Hard copies of the report can be requested, but please note that they may not always be available. To order one, please contact Csilla Tóth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PDF Document – 7349K
Living Together: City Strategies for Social Inclusion
|Event Date:||February 8, 2012|
|Event Time:||15:00 GMT|
The role of civil society is crucial to creating and maintaining inclusive cities. More and more city authorities acknowledge that they cannot develop and implement policies on social inclusion and diversity on their own. Both actors have a key role to play in achieving full and equal participation of minority and marginalized residents in urban settings. At a time when many local authorities are experiencing an increased strain on their resources and communities, how can effective partnerships between city administrations and civil society actors be nurtured and sustained?
As illustrated in the At Home in Europe Project report Living Together: Projects Promoting Inclusion in 11 EU Cities, a number of initiatives are being taken to increase contacts and effective dialogue between civil society actors and local policy- and decision-makers allowing them to work together as equal partners to support and advance the social inclusion of all groups.
Supported by the Open Society Foundations’ At Home in Europe Project, Cities of Migration will host a free international webinar (online seminar) which examines strategic city-led initiatives that strengthen the capacity of city councils, civil society organizations and ordinary citizens to work together for more inclusive communities and strong democratic institutions.
The webinar will feature presentations on concrete projects from two of the eleven cities studied in the Muslims in EU Cities reports: Antwerp (Belgium) and the London Borough of Waltham Forest (United Kingdom), and listeners will learn—and get a chance to ask questions—about current successful initiatives in the two cities.
- Claire Witney, Community Engagement Manager, London Borough of Waltham Forest
- Naima Charkaoui, Director, Minderhedenforum (Forum of Ethnic Cultural Minorities)
- Leen Verbist, Alderman, Antwerp City Council
There is no cost to participate. You will need a computer with internet access and a landline telephone. Please visit the Cities of Migration Learning Exchange for more details and to register.
Featured Image Credit: This Messy Life