Integration means equal access for all residents – whether locally-born or migrants from another country – to all the spheres of activity which together enable that community to develop and flourish. From finding a home or a job, to cultural life, healthcare or civic activism: in the integrated city or town, all will be open on equal terms to everyone. All have a stake in that locality, and it belongs to them all.
Never has this been more important. Even before COVID-19, communities up and down the country were grappling with huge challenges to integration: deep cuts to our public services, more precarious forms of work, growing inequalities, and the rapid pace of social and technological change. The pandemic has merely exposed and entrenched many of these issues.