On 15 September, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) and its members will celebrate the International Day of Democracy. This year's theme – Engaging Young People on Democracy – highlights the challenges and opportunities of young people engaging in democratic processes.
UCLG would like to recall the vital role of local and regional governments as both a force for peace and solidarity between peoples and a force for promoting Human Rights – civil and political, social and economic – as recognised, codified and endorsed by the United Nations.
We are further convinced that local authorities can and should contribute to facilitating democratic ways for communities to achieve these objectives.
The members of UCLG also stress that local democracy is not just a formal value but must be continuously updated and revised, ensuring genuine equality and participation for all, men and women, and the active participation of young people.
In this light, UCLG and its members believe that strengthening local government in any country, through more effective and democratic public policies, strengthens the entire nation and the world community.
Local and Regional Governments within UCLG are aware of their responsibility to take an active role in responding to the challenges facing humanity – to fight strongly against poverty, ignorance, intolerance, discrimination, exclusion, insecurity, environmental degradation and cultural levelling – and are committed to working with the United Nations, civil society and all development partners to fulfil this responsibility for post-2015 and towards Habitat III.