House Resolution Designates “Sister Cities International Day”

A bipartisan resolution (H.R. 775), introduced by Congressmen Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and Joaquin Castro (D-TX), recognizes the impact of Sister Cities International over the past 60 years and designates July 15, 2016 as “Sister Cities International Day”.

Founded in 1956 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower to create more community-led global relationships, Sister Cities International today has over 570 member cities, counties, and states with relationships between more than 2,300 communities in 150 countries, spanning 6 continents. Further, Sister Cities connections are present in nearly every district represented in the House of Representatives, according to the resolution.

Representative DeSantis’ district includes the city of San Augustine, Florida, which participates in wide-ranging exchanges with citizens from their partner cities in the Bahamas, Colombia, Mexico, and Spain.  In a press release DeSantis states:

“The partnerships developed by Sister Cities International have helped foster peace by cultivating connections between different cultures. Partnering our communities with international cities provides the opportunity to develop relationships and projects that benefit our relations with people in foreign countries. For the past 60 years, Sister Cities International has had a positive impact on my district and beyond, and I am proud to introduce this resolution.”

In Texas, Representative Castro’s district includes San Antonio, a very active city with Sister Cities partnerships in India, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, and China. Castro commented on the proven impact of the program in promoting a global citizenry and civic diplomatic action:

“San Antonio’s international profile is on the rise, and our Sister Cities relationships have helped make that possible. Through these partnerships, San Antonio has been able to build strong cultural, educational, and economic ties with communities around the world. This engagement has led to student exchanges, non-profit collaboration, and foreign direct investment that benefits our city’s economy. In today’s tumultuous world, the mutual understanding and respect that Sister Cities International fosters is particularly valuable and worthy of special recognition.”