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Tuscany sees migrant inclusion through the lens of common goods management

Tuscany sees migrant inclusion through the lens of common goods management

An inter-governmental agreement was signed in order to promote this project

Last week, on 4 March, news came from the Italian region of Tuscany about a new social inclusivity initiative aimed at involving migrants, and more specifically third-country citizens, into the economic and social lives of the communities they currently live in. To that end, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Tuscan regional government, local municipalities and Anci Toscana (the branch of the Italian municipal association in that region).

It was explained that this is part of a European-funded project called Savoir Faire that seeks to boost entrepreneurial and employability capacities among non-national residents. This was also inspired by the recent adoption of a regional law 71 on the management of common goods by residents.

Anci Toscana leads an initiative that is a first in Italy

The Savoir Faire project in its essence is about providing means to increase the capacity of third-country nationals to support themselves whether through self-employment or employability. Likewise, it aims to boost public and private organizations in their scope of action regarding the employment of such people through, for example, fair recruitment paths and validation and recognition of foreign work experience and certifications.

Part of the project, however, is also focused on the issue of the so-called common goods – that is public goods that can be accessed by everyone. Water, air, fishing stocks are often given as examples in economics.

Our goal is to extend the values ​​of common goods to new citizens, who in a context of active citizenship can find forms of personal growth and skills, also to begin to feel the very place where he presumably will have his future life. On the other hand, for the 'autochthonous' residents, seeing this work on the territory by people with whom it is not always easy to relate, can certainly favour mutual knowledge and overcoming barriers. In small steps we can go a long way,” explained Matteo Biffoni, mayor of Prato and the president of Anci Toscana.

Traditionally, migrants and non-nationals are distanced from any communal and municipal initiatives which might involve the betterment of populations through entrepreneurship and the use of common goods. That is why it was decided that Tuscan municipalities will commit (on a voluntary basis) to take a more proactive role in that regard and adapt their institutions to reflect that and introduce collaborative and civic innovation actions and tools that allow for the involvement of more vulnerable groups of people.

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