Cities members of ICCAR pledge to advance inclusive social policies to “leave no one behind”

11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

In celebration of World Cities Day 2019, representatives of the Global Steering Committee of the International Coalition of Inclusive and Sustainable Cities – ICCAR met at UNESCO Headquarters on 30 October 2019 to advance the commitments made in the Bologna Declaration (adopted by ICCAR in 2016) and the Nancy Declaration (adopted in 2018), and chart a roadmap with concrete actions for the implementation of these commitments.

The Committee is composed of Mayor Erias Lukwago of the Coalition of African Cities, Ms Fatimetou Abdel Malick of the Coalition of Arab Cities, Mr Gyonggu Shin of the Asia-Pacific Coalition, Mr Benedetto Zacchiroli of the European Coalition, Ms Fabiana Goyeneche of the Coalition of Latin American and Caribbean Cities, Ms Laura Waxman of the US Coalition, and Mr David Schimpky from the Canadian Coalition.

These Ten-Point Plans of Action are comprised of ten commitments made by the cities covering the priority areas of city authorities (education, housing, employment and cultural activities). Aiming to align these action plans to current realities that exacerbate the situation of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged, the meeting discussed how cities can enhance social policies and deliver services towards ICCAR’s objectives of inclusion and non-discrimination that defend the rights of migrants, refugees, minorities, youth, women, LGBTQ persons, indigenous peoples and persons living with disabilities, inter alia. While emphasizing the importance of intersectionality, the participants agreed on highlighting gender equality and youth participation as pillars in the review of the Ten-Point Plan of Action, as well as encouraging collaboration between the different sectors of urban stakeholders including civil society. Each action plan will be reviewed by the cities in collaboration with UNESCO, and will be finalized and re-launched in 2020.

With the objective of building strong partnerships to mobilize resources, the meeting also welcomed partners from institutions such as the UNESCO Chair on Inclusive Urbanism, the OECD, the Open Society Foundations, the International Observatory of Mayors on Living Together, the International Scientific Committee of the UNESCO Slave Route Project and the French National Commission for UNESCO. To bolster city-to-city cooperation and extend partnerships with other urban actors, participants agreed to develop a common global project which will also be launched together with the reviewed Ten-Point Plans of Action next year.

The Committee also decided to establish a presidency that will enhance the coordination of ICCAR’s work and reinforce its role as a global reference for inclusive urban governance. Mr Benedetto Zacchiroli of the European Coalition was unanimously chosen to act as President of the Global Steering Committee for the next two years.