UN-HABITAT became a member of the Inter-American Coalition for the Prevention of Violence, during the fifth World Urban Forum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which took place from March 22 to 26.
UN-HABITAT’s Executive Director, Mrs. Anna Tibaijuka, Amb. Alexandre Addor-Neto, Secretary for Multidimensional Security at the Organization of American States, Cecilia Martinez, Director of the Regional Office for Latin America and The Caribbean, Elkin Velasquez, Safer Cities Programme’s coordinator and Elizabeth Gozzer, Technical Secretary of the Coalition, were present.
Founded in 2000, the Coalition is an alliance of inter-American and international agencies formed to develop strategies and solutions to address high levels of violence and crime in the Americas.
Its purpose is to act as a catalyst for the prevention of violence in the Americas by increasing knowledge about systematic violence prevention and by facilitating the development of partnerships and programs that put this knowledge into practice.
UN-HABITAT’s first session with the Coalition in Rio highlighted three main issues: the relevance of emphasizing the local level as a complement to the national level and mainstay of social cohesion; the need for a specific approach to urban vulnerabilities in regards to crime and violence for particular societal groups; and the significance of addressing the root causes of crime and insecurity.
Special attention was paid to the importance of focusing on physical integration and public spaces as hearts of community life. Additionally, it was noted that a manual is being developed for local authorities to develop local plans geared towards crime prevention for youth at risk.
Attention was also paid to issues of common concern such as corruption, drug trafficking and border and transnational crimes, in view of which it was emphasized that there was need for a regional observatory for systematic information management and coordination for generating financial resources to support prevention activities.
For more information please contact:
U-HABITAT: Elkin Velasquez, phone: +254207625538;