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22 February, 2007

Interim statement on integration and cohesion

The Commission on Integration and Cohesion, the advisory body set up by Government to look at overcoming the barriers to integration and cohesion has published its interim statement looking at how local areas can make the most of the benefits delivered by increasing diversity as well as responding to associated tensions.

Tony Breslin, Chief Executive of the Citizenship Foundation has welcomed the important debate that will be sparked by this, saying “The commission is right to cast the debate in terms of ‘Shared Futures’. This reflects our own work around the need to build a shared citizenship through programmes like our Diversity and Dialogue project.

“Their recommendations around the importance of English as a shared language are of particular interest, but they are right also to highlight other factors that undermine community cohesion, notably social deprivation and competition over scarce resources.

“We especially welcome the Commission’s proposals around the twinning of schools and the use of school sites for community focussed activities that build understanding, confidence and cohesion.”

The Commission's full report will be published in June.


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