“From reception to integration: the Role of Local and Regional Authorities facing migration”. This is the title of the report prepared by the Current Affairs Committee, with the participation of the Regional Governor of Attica, Rena Dourou, which has been adopted today by the Plenary of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe. The Report makes a specific reference (points 48 and 71) to the experience of the Region of Attica regarding the operation of the Logistics Centre in the general framework of receiving refugees / migrants. More specifically, it is stressed that “while the overall picture is rather bleak, more and more positive examples appear”. “One of these examples is the Logistics Centre of the Region of Attica which was visited by the rapporteurs in September 2016”.
At the same time, an addition (point 172) proposed by the Region of Attica, regarding the need for “direct access of Local and Regional Authorities to European funds, such as AMIF and other EU financing tools, for accommodating housing, health, and other pressing needs of refugees / migrants", was accepted.
In her speech at the Plenary, the Regional Governor of Attica, stressed, inter alia, that "the reception and integration of refugees / migrants represents also a big challenge. A challenge for Local and Regional Authorities. A challenge for European societies. A challenge that leads to a single important conclusion: Local and Regional Authorities have a vital catalytic rolein social cohesion and growth, under the effects of the refugee / migration phenomenon”.
She also stressed the need for “taking responsibility and action in a concerted way at all three levels of government: European, national, local”. “Because today, a time when xenophobic and racist tendencies are on the rise, in the shadow of blind terrorist attacks, Europe is at a crossroads. Or rather it is beginning to face a deadlock situation. This requires policies respecting human rights and the rule of law. These are the exact policies promoted by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities”, said the Regional Governor of Attica.