Press release

COVID-19: Cities call for European solidarity

1 April 2020

Mayors of big cities across Europe call for cross-border solidarity during the corona crisis. In a joint statement of the network EUROCITIES, they urge strong collaboration between all levels of government.

‘The Covid-19 pandemic has turned our lives upside down and disrupted our societies beyond precedent,’ reads the statement from the network, which represents more than 140 major European cities. ‘We are deeply concerned about both the short and longer-term knock-on effects of the pandemic and the Europe-wide lockdown.’

‘We can already see the violent shock to our labour markets and sharp increases in unemployment locally,’ the mayors report. ‘Our health and social services are stretched beyond limits,’ affecting vital city services towards vulnerable groups, including the elderly, those at risk of domestic violence, homeless people, or people suffering from mental health illnesses.

EU needs to work with cities in the crisis – and beyond

‘With the right tools, city governments can further support people and local economies in the current crisis,’ EUROCITIES states, calling on the EU to work closely with cities on the EU’s recovery plan and to ensure rapid access for cities to funding.

The city leaders request ‘an increased health policy and crisis coordination at EU level’ and a close European cooperation: ‘The current situation calls for solidarity in the EU and strong collaboration between all levels of government.’

Cities are already working together across Europe ‘to urgently learn from each other’s responses and deal with the crisis in the most effective way,’ the mayors state. City collaboration is organised through networks like EUROCITIES and its platform COVIDnews.

The mayors also highlight the need to think and plan ahead for the time after the current crisis. ‘We need to have a clear view on sustainably rebuilding our communities and cities,’ they demand: Europe’s ‘ambition of climate neutrality by 2050 and its European Green Deal flagship initiatives must stay on track.’



Notes to Editors   

  1. EUROCITIES is the political platform for major European cities. We network the local governments of over 140 of Europe’s largest cities and more than 40 partner cities that between them govern some 130 million citizens across 39 countries.
  2. The COVIDnews platform is available here:
    Read the full text of EUROCITIES’ mayors statement here: EUROCITIES_reaction_Covid19


Media contact:    

Alex Godson: +32 495 298 594 //


Alex Godson Media Coordinator


  • The glass city hall

    Paweł Adamowicz, former Mayor of Gdansk, has left a lasting legacy in the city in the form of its openness policy.

    4 minutes read
  • No place like home

    Berlin is taking action to ensure that newly arrived Roma, and every resident, has the right and possibility to actively participate in society.

    5 minutes read
  • Saving the world with tomatoes

    Ghent has won a UN award for the way the Belgian city puts food on the table. See the ingredients of Ghent’s food policy.

    5 minutes read
  • Let it rain

    What would happen if cities let rain run its course? Paris is becoming a permeable city and with rain, other positive effects have trickled in.

    5 minutes read
  • On the right track

    How does Zagreb keep in mind that everyone's mobility matters? It listens and learns from local NGOs and involves every group in society.

    7 minutes read
  • CARbon free

    At the heart of Prague's new transport policy is a more integrated, energy efficient and environmentally friendly public transport system.

    5 minutes read
  • Branching out

    Planting urban trees to boost climate action and citizen wellbeing is a growing trend, but what does it take to get it right? France's greenest city, Angers, shows how it should be done.

    5 minutes read
  • A breath of new life

    Urban renewal is bringing life and jobs back to the centre of Lodz, a one time industrial city.

    5 minutes read
  • The movement for movement

    How do you attract talent, and how do you enable talent? “It’s two branches of the same issue, working at the same time,” explains Marja Nyrhinen, whose job title, ‘City of Tampere coordinator of talent attraction and migration’ really says it all.

    6 minutes read
  • My future city 2030

    Porto has a goal to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030, but thinking green requires a strong vision of the future.

    6 minutes read