The High Commission for Immigration and Intercultural Dialogue (ACIDI), in addition to its own initiatives in the field of intercultural dialogue, is a member of the Roma EDEM project, whose aims are to reduce the disparity between anti-discrimination legislation and institutional practice, including issues relating to Gypsies and Travellers on the European political agenda. Coordination of this project is provided by the Fundación Secretariado General Gitano (see http://www.ciga-nos.pt/).
On the issue of specific support for international youth mobility, the Portuguese Youth Institute (Instituto Português da Juventude – IPJ) is in charge of the Youth in Action programme in Portugal (Juventude em Acção). This is a European Union programme which encourages mobility among young people between the ages of 15 and 28 both within and outside European borders, informal education, intercultural dialogue and the inclusion of all young people, regardless of their educational, social or cultural origins.
Intercultural dialogue: actors, strategies, programmes
Some government bodies are strengthening their efforts to better respond to the needs of the immigrant population, e.g. the new High Commission for Immigration and Intercultural Dialogue (ACIDI), a public institute under the Presidency of the Council of Ministers (in 2007, ACIDI replaced the High Commission for Immigration and Ethnic Minorities – ACIME -, which was established in 1996).
The High Commission main attribution consists in the promotion of intercultural dialogue. Important axis designed to address this aim: to implement the study of ethnic minorities integration in order to inform operative government policies; to include in the High Commission social bodies, delegates chosen by the associations or federations of the different immigrants communities; to promote interdepartmental action across the public administration system, central and local (see the attached cases of Good Practice on Intercultural Dialogue).
Programmes for the use of audiovisual, particularly TV weekly magazines, are broadcasted by a national TV channel to facilitate intercultural dialogue. They are co-produced mainly by the High Commission and some associations that work for equality and against racial discrimination.
In the context of bilateral cultural agreements signed between Portugal and other countries in order to establish cultural cooperation programmes, Portugal carries out the so-called “Mixed Commissions”. In recent years (1996/2003), these Commissions have been conducted with 15 European Countries.
ACIDI was the Portuguese body responsible for preparing the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008.
Government’s overall approach to intercultural dialogue