The Medellín Cómo Vamos (Medellin, How We Are Doing) latest report about the city’s quality of life in 2017; that also set goals based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 (ODS), is, without a doubt a key tool for strategic planning and the vision for the future of the city, for the general welfare.
This is how the Medellín Cómo Vamos analysis, a private interinstitutional alliance that evaluates and follows up on the city’s quality of life, gathers interest by calling for a private-public collaboration so, from Mayor Federico Gutierrez’s administration, solutions to the current problems can be found, and projects and programs can be designed to fulfill those goals; regardless of which administration executes them.
Highlights of the Quality of Life Medellin 2017 report, regarding 2016, include elements with great social impact such as the per capita income growth (1.9%), reduction of population in poverty (0.4%), reduction of extreme poverty (3.6%) growth of the middle class (1.2%), and
a greater public investment on the total administration expenses (5.8%).
The issue about the middle class draws attention because it reflects a better per capita income, more formal employment, better quality of life and satisfaction of basic needs.
To consolidate figures against poverty means furthering initiatives of care for people in extreme poverty, strengthening alliances with the private sector sharing a common goal and focusing in those aspects in which families achieve smaller goals: employment, income, nutrition and housing.
Eighty-four (84%) of the public investment concentrated in the areas of transportation, health, urban equipment, security, coexistence, and promotion and development.
The greatest challenge for the city continues to be social inequality which represents a great burden to thousands of families who see their advancement possibilities closed. At this point in 2017, the Gini marker did not vary and stayed in 0.52%.
The increased homicides, rate compared to 2016 (from 21.5 violent deaths for every 100,000 inhabitants, to 23.2), is another fact that forces to be vigilant and to execute even more innovative plans to counteract the issue. However, the city stayed out of the list of the 50 more violent capitals of the world, and the reports of motorcycle thefts decreased a 33.1% in 2016, from 5,130 to 3,431 cases.
If there is something to credit Mayor Gutierrez for, is his work against delinquency, dismantling structures and sending decades-long impunity-operating capos to jail.
The Municipality, the public Prosecutors, the Army and the Police must keep united before crime and invest and continuously monitor the impact of Public Safety policies.
In education, we still have difficulties. We have increased coverage in primary education and achieved better grades in math and language in 9th grade; but we still have low access to higher education. Here, inequality is more evident. In El Poblado, access to the University is very high, about 80%, but for the rest of the communities it does not reach even a 30%. Another critical element is that 18% of the youth is not studying or has finished high school.
Medellin and its administrators have resources to act locally to project the city to the rest of the country and globally, by incorporating to its development plans those of the ODS; plans that will help us achieve those social justice goals we are all working for.