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Guidance Document: Local Inclusion for Migrants and Refugees

Jan 15, 2021

After a first meeting at the margins of International Conference to Adopt the Global Compact for Migration in 2018, the Center for Mediterranean Integration (CMI), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and development (OECD), the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Conference for Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Education, Science and Culture Organization (UNESCO), and the World Health Organization (WHO) came together to brainstorm on how to collectively further support local authorities in reaching the goals and objectives set out in the two Global Compacts.


Two years later, and after several internal meetings, the group of partners drafted a guidance document on “Local Inclusion of Migrants and Refugees: A Gateway to Existing Ideas, Resources and Capacities for Cities Across the World”.


This document wants to support local authorities to implement the recommendations included in the for Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) and the Global Compact for Refugees (GCR), as well as showcasing best practices and actions that local authorities around the world are already carrying on to include migrants and refugees in their services. Its pecifically aims to:

  • provide cities with field-tested guidance to proactively shape their local inclusion measures;
  • showcase the contribution cities across the world are providing to the implementation of the SDGs, the GCM and GCR;
  • tap into cutting-edge existing support on the key dimensions contributing to local inclusion.

Developed in partnership with different specialized organizations, this document contains information deriving from each partner’s expertise and experience in dealing with local authorities, deriving a set of cross-thematic recommendations.


In the drafting stage, the partner organizations have consulted 45 cities around different regions through a survey launched in July 2020, and modified the Guidance Document and its recommendations accordingly. In the survey, local authorities underlined their roles in reception and inclusion of migrants and refugees and expressed their interest in the practicable recommendations presented in the report, while underlining that there is a need to invest in capacity building for the implementation of the recommendations. The participating authorities stated their continuous interest and efforts to foster social and economic inclusion of migrants and enhance the social cohesion in their cities, while stating that they have specific needs for further capacity development activities on multisectoral, multi-stakeholder and inclusive processes.


In addition, the Guidance Document has been updated also in the light of the post COVID-19 realities and the decisions that cities are compelled to make for enhancing inclusion while ensuring social and health priorities.


The Guidance Document provides cross-sectorial recommendations in different areas:

  • Multi-level governance
  • Urban and territorial planning
  • Local Economic Development
  • Migrant and refugee entrepreneurship
  • Human rights
  • Children and youth
  • Health

The knowledge and information included in the different chapters can be adapted and adjusted to meet the needs of local authorities according to their specific priorities, geographical position and local context – and the capacity and resources available. Through this guidance document, national authorities are invited to get inspired by local initiatives and consider scaling up where relevant. In this first effort to compile experiences and recommendations from different yet complementary angles, local solutions showcased in this document are organized according to their main specific sectoral focus but are not limited to tackling one thematic only.


The contributing organizations hope that these experiences and recommendations will offer inspiration to city leaders and local stakeholders and guide further support from the international community.


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