Communities that are strong and inclusive lead to a better quality of life, a stronger sense of identity and belonging, and mutual respect and equality. This is central to the idea of a civil society on which democracy rests.
More information on the national picture
Community Cohesion is what must happen in all communities to enable
different groups of people to get on well together. A key contributor to
community cohesion is integration which is what must happen to enable new
residents and existing residents to adjust to one another.
The UK Government’s vision of an integrated and cohesive
community is based on three foundations:
- People from different backgrounds have similar life opportunities
- People know their rights and responsibilities
- People trust one another and trust local institutions to act fairly
three key ways of living together:
- A shared future vision and sense of belonging
- A focus on what new and existing communities have in common, alongside
a recognition of the value of diversity
- Strong and positive relationships between people from different
Commission on Integration and Cohesion
The Commission on Integration and Cohesion was announced on 28 June 2006,
by then Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Ruth
The Commission, a fixed term advisory body, was set up to considering how
local areas can make the most of the benefits delivered by increasing
diversity - and also to consider how they can respond to the tensions it
can sometimes cause. It was tasked with developing practical approaches to
building communities' own capacity to prevent and manage tensions.
The Commission was chaired by Darra Singh, Chief Executive of Ealing
Council and the Commissions final report - "Our Shared Future" - was
published on 14 June 2007.
Institute of Community Cohesion (iCoCo)
The Institute of Community Cohesion was established in 2005 to provide a
new approach to race, deversity and multiculturalism. Their work focuses on
"building positive and harmonious community relations" using applied
research to constantly develop practice and to build capacity of all
the agencies and individuals involved.
iCoCo is a not for profit partnership, which aims to build capacity at all
levels and in all local and national agencies to promote community cohesion
and is supported by CLG. Services include:
- Mapping of local areas on cohesion issues
- Developing toolkits for local areas (schools are a priority)
- To work closely with central Government on policy development
GOEM is currently seeking to develop a regional forum for policy officers
and practitioners within local authorities for community cohesion, with the
first meeting planned for Summer 2009.