Cities and Migrants: Implementing and Integrating Cities Charter
In many cities the funding of local integration policies is largely dependent on the budget lines of the national or regional authorities. In some cases national funding for local integration policies decreased and European Integration Funds managed at the national level often do no reach the city council.
The Integration Cities Charter identifies the responsibility and opportunities of European cities as policy makers, service providers, employers, and buyers of goods and services to provide equal opportunities for all residents, to integrate migrants, and to embrace the diversity of their populations.
Since the first report in March 2013, seven new European cities and one non-European city became signatories. These and several other cities have engaged with EUROCITIES on the topic of migrant integration and helped develop tools to make the charter commitments a reality at city level.
‘Integration’ as a concept has been debated by the members of the migration and integration working group over the past few years, and this report presents the results of our work in the different European cities: What do we mean by integration? Who do we target? Who do we provide services to?
Integration policies in cities do no only target third country nationals with a residence permit; irregular migrants, EU nationals with a migrant background, EU mobile citizens, and persons seeking international protection also need access to services and are part of the wider concept of ‘urban citizenship’ or citizenship of residence’.
EUROCITIES has demonstrated its ability to adapt and willingness to engage in new fields of work, responding to the needs and priorities of its members: the recent ‘EUROCITIES statement on Asylum’ is the result of a combined effort by members of the group to respond to one of Europe’s most urgent challenges. EUROCITIES has highlighted to the European institutions the needs, added value, and recommendations of cities; enriching the wider European debate.