Working with Religious Diversity – guide for day-to-day municipal practice
Immigration of people from all over the world has changed the structure of the population in European towns and cities.
This can be seen in Leipzig too – some 9% of Leipzig residents come from immigrant families originating from more than 160 different countries. The migrants who come to live with us bring their religions with them and have a justified interest in practising them.
This is not such a new phenomenon for Leipzig, if you remember, for example, the founding of the Reformed Church by French immigrants around 1700 or the establishment of Jewish life in the city, which had one of the most significant Jewish communities in Germany in the 1920s.
When exercising their right of freedom of religion guaranteed by the German constitution, religious communities confront local authorities nationwide with issues which do not always fit into the traditional patterns of processing and decision-making. These new challenges have an impact on an increasing number of administrative areas – from building regulations and veterinary supervision service through cemetery and swimming pool codes to youth aid, health support and assistance for the elderly.
The aim of the “Working with Religious Diversity” guide is to provide professionals and decision makers in local authorities with orientation, ideas and suggestions to assist them when working with religious diversity. It is the result of an in-depth sharing of experience within the “Integration Policy” inter-community quality circle, in which the Leipzig Integration Officer has also participated since 2009.