Human Rights Cities Network Webinars
The Human Rights Cities & COVID 19
The way forward
The Human Rights Cities Network (HRCN) initiate a new dynamic with the cities participating to the network (Middelburg, Barcelona, Utrecht, Lund, York, Graz) through two webinars. The way forward aims to exchange on how being a human rights city helped to address the COVID 19 crisis, to share good practices and to better understand the needs of the participants. Regular contacts would help to better support established and potential human rights cities in their initiatives.
The webinar’s outcomes are informative and constructive. The primary objective was to reconnect with participants within the Covid19 context. The discussion revealed also the importance of identifying the role and the added value of the HRCN.
The decisions and the steering of Covid19 measures are taking place at the national level. Also, the cities endorse the responsibility for their implementation at local level by local authorities (mayors, police, municipality). Human rights are not systematically used as a framework in the Covid19 response. However, all participating cities implement specific policies and initiatives in line with human rights standards. The crisis not only brings concrete aspects of human rights into people’s lives, but also highlights the need of fundamental values in the way the “post Covid19 crisis” is managed by cities in Europe.
Zooming at the pandemic, most human rights cities does not follow explicitly the human rights based approach in their reactions to the COVID 19 pandemic. Nontheless, there seems to be a fundamental awareness of human rights issues that has impacted the type and way in which activities have been conducted and partnerships have been forged on a city level.
Together, we want to initiate an inter-urban space to exchange on human rights cities models but also to further expanded with new participants from other cities in Europe.