Poland: 2017 priorities of the National Platform of Cooperation for Integration
During a two-days conference on 15-16 December 2016, the National Platform of Cooperation for Integration presented its priorities for 2017. The Platform is a forum initiated by the International Organization for Migration and the Polish Ministry of the Interior for information and experience exchanges between integration stakeholders such as government representatives, trade unions, employers' organisations, media, NGOs and immigrant associations.
Debates accompanying this year's conference centred around the impact of migration on the social, cultural and local development of local communities, as well as education as a key area of integration. The current and potential role of media in shaping the image of migrants and public awareness was also an important topic. Related to these discussions are the Platform's 2017 priorities as defined by its members:
- intensify promotion and information activities, in closer cooperation with media and local authorities;
- develop thematic projects (culture, employment, etc.) integrating members who specialise in similar areas;
- reach out to integration activists from smaller towns and include them in the Platform;
- continue to award small grants for integration initiatives;
- participate actively in the development and implementation of Poland's migration policy in cooperation with national and local authorities; etc.
The National Platform of Cooperation for Integration's meeting conclusions have helped the development of legislation and political strategy for the integration of immigrants in Poland. The conference gathers several dozens of integration experts (mainly representatives of NGOs and local authorities) from across Poland. The 2016 Złote Wachlarze Awards which honours individuals and institutions that have made an outstanding contribution to support immigrant integration in Poland were handed out during the event to notably the municipality of Gdańsk.