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Coordination Office for Migrant Policy (CPMIg) - City of São Paulo


Since its establishment, the CPMig has endeavoured to promote dialogue between government, immigrants, trade union members, civil society organizations, and academics. One of the results of this coordination was the development of a programme of targets still in the year of its creation.
Some of the main actions of CPMig-SP include:
1) Drafting of bill No. 143/2016 establishing the Municipal Policy for the Immigrant Population, submitted by the Municipal Government of São Paulo to its City Council on 31 March of this year. The bill is the result of the work of an Intersectoral Committee established by CPMig and composed of 13 municipal government secretariats and 13 civil society organizations. It was sanctioned as Law 16,478 of 2016;
2) Signing of agreements on accessibility to banking services aimed at facilitating account opening procedures for immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers;
3) Implementation of the National Programme of Access to Technical Education and Employment for Immigrants (PRONATEC - Immigrants);
4) Creation of the Emergency Shelter of the City of São Paulo, which operated from 8 May to 28 August 2014 and registered 2,349 immigrants from 20 different nationalities.
5) The creation of the Reference and Assistance Centre for Immigrants (CRAI) in November 2014;
6) Training and sensitization of civil servants for the provision of qualified services to immigrants, with employees from the areas of Health, Social Assistance, Education and Metropolitan Civil Guard;
7) Organization of the 1st Municipal Conference on Policies for Immigrants (2013) and election of the extraordinary members of the Municipal Participatory Council. The Extraordinary Counsellor chair was created for the inclusion of immigrants in planning, overseeing public actions and expenditures in the regions, and suggesting public policies and actions.
8) Regularization of cultural fairs organized by immigrant communities;
9) Survey and identification of the immigrant population of São Paulo;
10) Promotion of migratory regularization and decent work and decent work - several actions, including a study on migrants’ access to labour intermediation services of Labour and Entrepreneurship Support Centres (CATe)) in the municipality’s neighbourhood of Luz.

Implementation Period

Created in 2013.

Context of the intervention

Coordination Office for Migrant Policy (CPMIg) was established under the Municipal Secretariat for Human Rights and Citizenship of São Paulo (SMDHC-SP ), according to the provisions of Law No. 15,764 of 2013, from the recognition by the government of the role and importance of different immigrant communities to the city's progress in the political, economic, social and cultural fields. Its goal is to coordinate migration policies in a cross-cutting, inter-sectoral and Inter-secretarial manner, in a pioneering local governance proposal in the city of São Paulo and in Brazil.
Importantly, Brazil is a Federative Republic with a political and administrative organization comprising the Union, states and municipalities, all independent pursuant to the Constitution. Thus, there is a distribution of power between these entities, and there are some matters of exclusive competence of the federated states.
While duties such as managing immigration flows and granting citizenship status are the responsibility of the Union, policies at street level, i.e., direct contact with immigrants through health, educational and cultural services are conducted largely by the municipality. The Municipal Government is, therefore, an important political actor for the inclusion of the immigrant population in public services. This emphasizes the importance of the engagement of various administrative bodies in a pioneering municipal policy in Brazil aimed at the migrant population. On the initiative of CPMig, the Municipality of São Paulo has approved its policy (Law 16,478/2016), which will allow not only the creation of specific public services for the migrant population and the improvement of existing ones, but also the inclusion of the migration issue in the various municipal public services.

Results/Impacts achieved

New paradigm - Governance no longer takes into account only the conditions that ensure an economically efficient State. It is now beginning to recognize the social and political dimensions in public management, with the consequent possibility of coordinating more sustained actions, as it encompasses society as a whole.
The local governance experience of CPMig takes into account not only the traditional patterns of coordination and cooperation between social and political actors and institutional arrangements that coordinate and regulate transactions within and across the borders of the economic system, including not only traditional mechanisms of aggregation and articulation of interests, such as political parties and pressure groups, but also informal social networks, hierarchies and associations of various kinds.
Political participation - An example of that was the CPMig coordination to facilitate the direct participation of immigrants in the Municipal Participatory Council5. In this context, space was open for immigrants to vote and be voted for in elections for counsellors and thus contribute to the decision on the course to be followed by the city, on an equal footing with nationals. Thus, political will and governance capacity were central elements for the sustainability of actions aimed at guaranteeing human rights, more specifically the rights of migrant workers.
Public policy for migrants established in municipal law - Since CPMig's efforts were consolidated in the passing of Law 16,478 of 2016, the commitment to foreigners living in the Municipality of São Paulo have become commitments of the municipality and not just of the current administration.

Innovation or Creativity

The experience of CPMig can be considered a successful local governance initiative in the promotion of the rights of migrants, consistent with the human rights doctrine. Drawing on the assumption that migrants are rights-holders, the political will demonstrated by the city of São Paulo is relevant mainly because it recognizes the demands presented by immigrants and that meeting it requires coordination between various social and governmental actors.

References for Contact about the good practice

Municipal Coordination Office for Migrant Policy (CPMig)
Rua Libero Badaró, 119, 7º andar, Centro
Phone: (11) 3113-9821

last updated on 15.11.2017^ top