Linz, City of Peace
City of Peace Linz
The unanimous decision of the city council paved the way: in 1986, the Upper Austrian capital declared itself "City of Peace Linz". The aim was to define the municipal responsibility for peace building measures and to support these. After the City of Linz was officially declared City of Peace in October 1986, it took the responsibility to „attend to the desire and the commitment for peace of the people in the city and to make it a basic principle of local politics in the future.“ This matter was concretised with the self-understanding of Linz as City of Peace and passed by unanimous decision of the city council in 2008. In its role as City of Peace, Linz raises the awareness of the citizens for those values which are the basis for peace, thus is committed to integrate all segments of the population in public consensus-building, a respectful interaction with foreign nationals, social security and a constructive conflict culture. Linz declares its solidarity with people in conflict regions around the world and stands up for justice, environmental sustainability, respect of human rights as well as the right to self-determination within national and international legal systems. The 25-year anniversary of the City of Peace Linz provided the occasion for a modern discussion about the significance of peace with a broad audience. In 2011, Linz dealt with the socio-political topic peace based on a holistic annual programme. The challenges of globalisation, such as economic crisis, migration, poverty and gap in prosperity, terrorism, climate change, natural disasters and social exclusion, create new major points in the peace discussion. Apart from peace, understood as the non-existence of war, the citizens of Linz are currently concerned with several topics on a local and global level such as social justice, equal opportunities, safety, environmental sustainability, integration and multiculturalism.
Peace Initiative by the City of Linz
Since 1998, the Peace Initiative, consisting of people who are committed to peace from different organizations and social fields, advises the City and the mayor of Linz with the aim to further and to support the local work for peace in cooperation with the Municipal Department of Culture with different activities and events. The Peace Initiative organizes symposia, debates at schools, lectures and much more in cooperation with different partners. Every year, the Peace Initiative also drafts the Peace Declaration of the City of Linz which the mayor then presents to the city council.