Paris, 7 December 2023 - On the eve of the European Parliament elections, in June 2024, and at a time when security in cities has become a major social and political issue, European cities and regions gather in Brussels for the Security, Democracy & Cities conference (20-22 March 2024) to discuss the challenges facing democracy.
How to create cities where all citizens feel free and secure? How to react to the multiple crises affecting citizens at the local level? How can cities respond to drugs and trafficking? How to build trust between citizens and public institutions? How to improve coexistence and reduce polarisation? These are some of the questions that will be discussed during the conference.
“European cities and regions have formidable capacities for mobilisation and solidarity. They are the level of governance best placed to design policies affecting everyday security.” Willy Demeyer, Mayor of the city of Liege and President of Efus
Exchanges between cities and the EU
The work carried out by Efus at the conference will inform the upcoming European security strategy for the period 2025-2029. Furthermore, the Security, Democracy & Cities conference coincides with the Belgian Presidency of the EU. Three months before the June 2024 European Parliament elections, local and regional authorities will exchange with the European Union’s decision-making bodies.
A wide array of topics and actors
Local, national and European elected officials, practitioners and academics will discuss some twenty themes that reflect the day-to-day reality of cities in terms of urban safety and crime prevention.
Field visits in Brussels
Conference attendees will have the opportunity to visit on the ground a number of prevention schemes in place in Brussels, such as the safe consumption room, the Regional Crisis Management Centre, examples of how technologies are being used for crime prevention, public space management schemes and social mediation programmes.
One of Efus’ objectives is to reaffirm the role of cities and local authorities as essential partners for security in Europe. The political recommendations that will come out of the conference will be submitted to national governments and European Union’s decision-making bodies.
140 cities and regions from 27 countries
Aimed at all urban security actors – local elected officials, public officers, public administrations, magistrates, law enforcement agencies, social workers, researchers, representatives of the private sector and civil society actors – the Security, Democracy & Cities conference will also gather experts and representatives from the European institutions and international organisations.
The previous edition of the Security, Democracy & Cities conference, in 2021 in Nice (France), gathered more than 700 participants representing 140 cities and regions from 27 mainly European countries.
The 2024 edition of the conference, which is held every three years, is organised by the European Forum for Urban Security (Efus) in partnership with safe.brussels, a public interest organisation that manages crime prevention and security in the whole territory of the Brussels Capital Region. As such, safe.brussels works with all the relevant stakeholders to ensure Brussels’ residents and visitors safety.
Silvia Icardi | Communications Manager
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