Important cooperation agreements were signed between Naples and San Francisco in the fields of human rights, technology, and science this past Friday, October 25th.
Creating new cooperation programs between Neapolitan and San Franciscan organizations, these agreements were penned in the presence of Naples’ Mayor Luigi de Magistris at the Italian Consulate General. California and San Francisco human rights leaders announced joint activities in the field of human rights and equal opportunities, which included negotiations for a pact between the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and the Naples Department of Equal Opportunities. The meeting was convened a few hours before the joint performance of Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem by the San Francisco Opera and Naples’ Teatro San Carlo at the War Memorial Opera House, the flagship event of the Year of Italian Culture in the United States.
San Francisco Human Rights Commissioner Michael Sweet, San Francisco Human Rights Commission Director Theresa Sparks, and Mayor Luigi de Magistris, announced their plan to negotiate a framework agreement for the promotion of human rights between San Francisco and Naples. California Assemblyman Tom Ammiano shared his commitment to promote cooperation with Naples and Italy on the promotion and protection of human rights.
Mind the Bridge Foundation, Campania Felix, and Skillpoint Association, signed an agreement to promote innovative entrepreneurship in Naples by financing fellowships to young Neapolitan entrepreneurs to study at the Mind the Bridge Startup School in San Francisco. Marco Marinucci, CEO and founder, signed for the Mind the Bridge Foundation.
University of California San Francisco (UCSF) and the University Federico II of Naples (UNINA) signed an agreement to organize biennial workshops alternatively in San Francisco and Naples, exchange of faculty, researchers, and mutual staff development opportunities. Dr. William De Grado, Vice-Chair, Pharmaceutical Department signed for UCSF, and Professor Angela Lombardi signed for UNINA.
The meeting provided an opportunity for local and international media to meet Mayor de Magistris and learn more of his plan to “Unite the Two Bays.”
“Naples and San Francisco take this opportunity of the historical joint performance of Verdi’s Requiem to bring the two bays closer together in business, technology, and equal opportunities,” said Mayor de Magistris. “Our two cities have a strong affinity, and not just because of their proximity to the sea and their maritime history, but also in light of their strong civil rights culture.”
Theresa Sparks, Executive Director, San Francisco Human Rights Commission, replied, “We look forward to working with the City of Naples in order to fight discrimination and strengthen human rights.”
Mayor de Magistris began his career as a public prosecutor in 1995 and worked in Naples from 1998 to 2002. He was deputy public prosecutor in Catanzaro from 2002 to 2009 and also served as a Member of the European Parliament. Mayor de Magistris was recognized for his commitment to fighting against organized crime and corruption during his time as a prosecutor. As a member of the European Parliament, de Magistris spoke out on human rights issues, particularly the forced return of vessels carrying migrants and asylum seekers on the high seas.
A staunch supporter of civil rights of gays, women, and all minorities, he has made way for a new coalition of civic-minded community organizations. De Magistris is taking the opportunity of his visit to San Francisco to highlight this renewed sense of civic purpose of the City of Naples in the field of arts, science, technology, and civic life.