Cities as guardians of fundamental rights. Ensuring equal access to quality services for all

Location: Noble Hall, Alfandega
Date: Fri, January 31
Time: 9:00 AM - 10:20 AM

All levels of public administration, including local authorities are bound to comply with fundamental rights obligations as prescribed in the anti-discrimination and fundamental rights legal requirements. This workshop looks at cities’ role as guardians of fundamental rights and how this is demonstrated through policy-making and public service provision. The objective of the workshop is to explore the extent to which local policies respond to challenges of human rights protection and how equal access to quality services is ensured for all. To set the scene, an overview of human rights requirements in the field of migration at the local level will be presented by Moritz Baumgartner, Assistant Professor at Utrecht University. It will be followed by a panel discussion, which consists of speakers from local authorities, and civil society organisations representing Roma communities, people with a migrant background and people with disabilities. The panel will provide insights on how to translate the fundamental rights requirements to practical measures at the local level. Outcomes of the workshop should support future local policy making, including EU funds programmes, to better meet fundamental rights requirements.

09.00 – 09.10 Introduction

Gergana Miladinova, Deputy Head of Unit, Directorate-General Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

09.10 – 09.25 Setting the scene – human rights obligations at the local level

Moritz Baumgärtel, Assistant Professor, Utrecht University, Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance

09.25 – 10.15 Panel discussion


  • Pilar Díaz, Mayor of Esplugues de Llobregat and Deputy Councillor for International Relations at Provincial Council of Barcelona
  • Maria Raquel Magalhães de Castelo Branco, Municipal Department of Social Affairs, Porto
  • Lefteris Papagiannakis, Project Manager, Athens
  • Saimir Mile, Le voix de Rroms
  • Ana Catarina Correia, Independent Living Centre, Porto
  • Michele LeVoy, Director, Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM)

10.15 – 10.20 Closing

Gergana Miladinova, Deputy Head of Unit, Directorate-General Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Useful Documents:

Toolkit on the use of EU funds for integration of people with a migrant background

Charter of Fundamental Rights

UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities

Mid-term evaluation of the EU Framework for national Roma integration strategies up to 2020

Parallel Workshop

Noble Hall

Labour Brochure: Fighting exploitation, promoting decent work

Firewall Health

City of Rights - Health: ensuring health care for undocumented residents

Words Matter_Terminology (EN)

Words Matter_Terminology (PT)