CoM on the ground – At the UNHQ in New York

The Inter-Ethnic City

This month Cities of Migration took a few key messages (along with a few of our best ideas) to UN HQ in New York: 

  • In global cities, all actors are integration actors.
  • Cities matter.

The reason?  The Permanent Missions of Italy and Canada, Alliance of Civilizations and International Organization of Migration were hosting, “‘The Inter-Ethnic City: Management and Policies for a Better Integration of Migrants.”  Check out the CoM presentation at the UN AoC website (and on UN Channel 3, Sept. 28), or download the presentations and speeches at the IOM.

The meeting looked at the challenges of rapid urbanization, globalization and the increasing importance of migration in urban context.

Cities of Migration talked about local practice and how the two-way integration dynamic means looking at everybody, the noisy, eclectic urban mosaic.

The city spaces where newcomers meet host communities are populated by more than the settlement worker, housing authority and employment officer. They also include unions, shopkeepers, business and professional associations, sports and arts groups, city planners, police and transportation authorities, politicians, media and ordinary citizens.

Their stories include how police officers can integrate newcomers and build trust in new institutions through language instruction; how building a local mosque can involve the whole community and resolve misunderstandings about cultural differences; how innovative zoning can create opportunities for immigrant entrepreneurs; how young people can be community leaders; how bicycling, street football or sports broadcasting, as well as education, can help level the playing field.

Have you got an integration story to tell us about?

For an event description, presentations, and archived video, see the IOM or the  UN AoC websites.