On 26 May, Amanda Fléty, Coordinator of the Committee on Social Inclusion, Participatory Democracy and Human Rights of United Cities and Local Governments (CSIPDHR-UCLG), participated with her co-chair from the City of Grigny, Philip Rio, in the seminar "Territorial public action at the heart of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda: SDG 16 - local authorities acting locally and globally," organised by United Cities of France (CUF) and the French Senate.
The mission of SDG 16 is to "Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies". Bearing this in mind, our coordinator presented our most recent activities and initiatives to promote the peace agenda from the scope of local and regional governments in the "Human rights for a world of peace world from the territorial scope" table. Our coordinator recalled that "there can be no human rights without peace," and that in the current context where one in two people in the world live in cities, UCLG's mission is to represent and promote the interests of local and regional authorities in international debates to help build a world of peace from the local level. Currently, CGLU advocates for a multilateralism inclusive through the participation of the mayors of this network members of cities, because "we can only go faster, but together we can get further away."
As a Committee dedicated to promoting, among the social inclusion and participatory democracy agenda, the human rights agenda within UCLG, our task is to represent and give resonance to the voice of local and regional governments that want to consolidate themselves as territories of peace. Thus, to champion the commitment of localities to human rights, we have launched the following initiatives in recent months:
- The current process of updating the UCLG Human Rights Charter-Agenda, more than 10 years after its adoption by UCLG. This document stands out as a framework for action with a human rights perspective from regional and local territories.
- Declarations in defence of human rights around major events in locations around the world: to denounce the coup d'état in Burma, the law "condemning homosexuals to death" in Uganda, as well as holding discussions with member territories in conflict zones, because it's vital to bring everyone to the table to build diplomatic relations at our level.
- Statements on the extraterritorial responsibilities of local and regional authorities: for example, the Global Justice Department of the City of Barcelona has launched a study to analyse the impact of the coltan mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
- Reflections on the extraterritorial responsibilities of local and regional authorities: for example, the Global Justice Department of the City of Barcelona has launched a study to analyse the impact of its consumption and production on a global scale, for example concerning the exploitation of coltan mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
- Leading international debates on the contribution of cities to peace: our participation in the Forum of Cities and Territories for Peace, held from 26 to 28 June in Bogotá.
- Launch of the global campaign "10, 100, 1000 cities and territories for human rights," together with the cities of Grigny, Vienna, Barcelona, Utrecht, Gwangju and Mexico City to call on cities to advance the peace and human rights agendas together.
- Working in collaboration with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to ensure that the Human Rights Council continues its work on a comprehensive resolution recognising the fundamental role of local authorities in the promotion and protection of human rights.
- A letter co-signed by Mr. Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and Ms. Emilia Saiz, Secretary General of UCLG, to invite cities and local and regional governments to show their commitment to human rights on the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration.
- Activities around the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the coup d'état in Chile, the 50th anniversary of the coup d'état in Uruguay and the 40th anniversary of the return of democracy in Argentina.
Through the work of the CSIPDHR local and regional authorities reiterate the importance of their commitment to the international dimension and the construction of an inclusive multilateralism. As our co-chairman Philippe Rio, mayor of Grigny, put it, " we have to think from the territory up". It is this notion of territorial responsibility that we defend within the CSIPDHR, so that cities and local and regional governments can also make their contribution to the respect, promotion and realisation of human rights, based on their local experiences and initiatives.