The 11th meeting of the Partnership started off with some updates from the Partnership Co-coordinator, the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME), reporting on the implementation process of the “European Partnership for Integration” that was signed last December with the European Integration Network. DG HOME further mentioned recent relevant publications of the European Commission:
- A Eurobarometer report on citizens’ perception on migration,
- the proposal for a Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027,
- and the recommendations to Member States as part of the “European Semester”.
The updates were followed by six consecutive sessions concerning the state of play of the actions.
Regarding the action on Urban Indicators, the partners discussed to expand the current focus to include new cities such as Berlin, Vienna, and Barcelona. Two more meetings on this action were announced for June and September 2018, during which some recommendations will be presented.
The partners of the action on the Urban Academy on Integration elaborated on the first edition of the Academy in April 2018 (read more). The City of Amsterdam presented an initial analysis and further recommendations on the organisation and modules. The Academy has been perceived as such a big success that it was agreed to continue with its implementation as an annual event.
The European Migrant Advisory Board, another Partnership action, has identified four main topics: participation, labour market integration, education, and housing. The board has four objectives:
- Present migrants’ and refugees’ interest at local, national and European levels;
- Ensure and promote their rights;
- Give a positive narrative;
- Advise on migrant and refugees policies.
A recommendation paper on cities’ access to integration funding was presented in February 2018 (read it here). A follow-up workshop on access to funding will be organised by EUROCITIES in November 2018.
The action leaders on Children in Migration reported from their workshop at the conference "Lost in Migration" organised by Missing Children in April 2018. An expert will provide policy recommendations based on the conference results.
The Partnership had been discussing the need and possibilities of prolonging the work for a while. These discussions had resulted in an overview indicating that some actions (2, 3, 5, 6, and 8) would benefit from a prolongation. As a result, the partners agreed upon prolonging the Partnership until 1July 2019 to secure the continuity of the actions. In this period, the Partnership envisages to hold two or three additional meetings, without the assistance provided by the Technical Secretariat, which ends in December 2018.
The upcoming months will thus be exciting for the Partnership. The European Week of Regions and Cities (8-11 October 2018, Brussels) will allow for a public discussion on specific actions. Registration opens on 4 July! The Joint Research Centre’s Data Challenge workshop on integration issues at the local level (27 November 2018, Brussels) will be particularly relevant for policy-makers and stakeholders.
The next Partnership meeting is scheduled for 27 September 2018 in Barcelona, to be followed by an additional meeting in November.