Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan and his NPA Councillors decided today to withdraw funding for a conference of 98 mayors from across the globe scheduled for Vancouver this June.
NPA Councillor Suzanne Anton moved the motion to withdraw the city’s support for the conference of delegates from the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities (IAPMC), which had been approved last March by the previous COPE council at a cost of $50,000.
"This decision sends a message to the world that Vancouver does not live up to its commitments," said Vancouver COPE Cllr David Cadman. "Having made a decision to invite almost 100 international mayors, many of whom have already made arrangements to travel here, we are now saying ‘don’t come’. For a city that aspires to be world class – Mayor Sullivan has now undermined our credibility in the eyes of the rest of the world."
The IAPMC conference would have followed the June, 2006 World Urban Forum which is being held on the 30th anniversary of the 1976 UN Habitat Forum that marked Vancouver’s debut on the international stage as a host of major international events.
The Peace Messenger Cities was established in 1982 by the mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and supported by a UN General Assembly resolution that municipal authorities have responsibility to assume an active, role in establishing a culture of peace within their borders.
Peace Messenger Cities has a current membership of 688 cities from 110 countries around the world, including Vancouver and 12 other Canadian cities. Cllr Cadman is Vancouver’s representative to the IAPMC.