National League of Cities and Strong Cities Network Join Forces to Tackle Rising Hate, Extremism and Polarization

February 27, 2024 - (4 min read)

Washington D.C. – Across the United States, municipal leaders have been challenged by growing hate, extremism, and polarization. From global events to domestic issues, the causes of this rise are many. Yet the local impact remains the same – mayors, city officials, and community members are left to pick up the pieces and look for ways to prevent further tension and violence.

To support our members in this difficult work, the National League of Cities is proud to announce its official programming partnership with the Strong Cities Network, a global network of more than 220 cities – urban and rural, big and small – that recognizes the unique role that local leaders and governments can play in preventing and responding to hate, extremism, and polarization, whatever the form or manifestation. Strong Cities facilitates sharing and learning opportunities for cities around the world confronted with an increasingly complex threat environment and develops tools and other practical resources to allow them to safeguard their communities from it.  

This partnership will provide NLC members with access to both cutting-edge resources and a network of municipal leaders around the world facing similar struggles. As NLC and Strong Cities deepen this exciting partnership, we look forward to developing even more relevant and meaningful opportunities for NLC members.  

Hate and extremism that can undermine social cohesion, polarize neighborhoods and foment violence have no place in our communities. Municipal leaders and the residents they serve should be able to go about their work and lives without fear that what may start as legally protected beliefs or speech turns will turn violent or provoke some other harmful action. NLC and Strong Cities stand united and ready to support cities in making this so.

“NLC is deeply committed to coming up with strategies to combat and root out the growing instances of violence, hate and extremism that local leaders find themselves confronting in their own communities far too frequently,” said NLC CEO and Executive Director Clarence Anthony. “We are energized by this new partnership with the Strong Cities Network that will help equip cities with the tools and support they need to protect democracy, address incivility, and ensure that everyone in America’s cities, towns and villages feels safe at home.”

“Strong Cities is proud to partner with our friends at NLC and excited to leverage the good practices, innovative approaches, and learnings from across our global network to support NLC members in tackling these challenges,” said Eric Rosand, Strong Cities’ Executive Director. “We firmly believe that cities – and city networks – are #StrongerTogether, and we look forward to working with NLC and its members.”

The partnership will kick off with a joint NLC – Strong Cities webinar at 11 a.m. (EST) on Wednesday, March 27 on city-led response, with a focus on how strategic communications in the immediate aftermath of an event, and in the longer term, can support resilience and social cohesion. Stay tuned for registration details in the coming weeks.


The National League of Cities (NLC) the voice of America’s cities, towns and villages, representing more than 200 million people. NLC works to strengthen local leadership, influence federal policy and drive innovative solutions. Stay connected with NLC on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram.

The Strong Cities Network is an independent, global network of more than 220 cities and sub-national governments dedicated to addressing hate, extremism and polarization, within a human rights framework. Connect with us on Twitter/X, LinkedIn and Facebook. #StrongCities #StrongerTogether