Mayor Garcetti highlights L.A.’s leadership on Global Development Goals

Los Angeles is one of the first cities in the world to report key data, progress, and challenges on gender equity, homelessness, climate action, and more

LOS ANGELES — Mayor Eric Garcetti today unveiled a new report highlighting Los Angeles’ leadership in pursuing and meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by the United Nations in 2015 to end poverty, protect the planet, and broaden prosperity. 

By presenting a Voluntary Local Review, L.A. became one of the first cities in the world to uphold a commitment to transparency, publish its data online, and share core progress and ongoing challenges in reaching global targets for gender equity, homelessness, housing, climate action, education, economic growth, and more.

“Global development begins with local leadership, and Los Angeles is proud to take the reins in translating the Sustainable Development Goals into real progress in our communities,” said Mayor Garcetti. “With this report, we are holding ourselves accountable for our promises to build a stronger city — and showing the world what we do every day to forge a more sustainable, just, fair, and prosperous future for all Angelenos.”

At a time when the value of international agreements is being questioned, today’s report summarizes the City’s steps toward achieving the SDGs and outlines how Los Angeles has mapped policy initiatives to achieve those goals. It places a special emphasis on L.A.’s work to expand shelters, housing, and services for homeless Angelenos, and provide equal opportunities for women and girls in the economy, sports, and society at-large. 

The first in a series of regular updates on our SDG progress, the review also lays out our efforts to deliver cleaner air and water, clean energy, green jobs, and environmental justice through L.A.’s Green New Deal; boost access to affordable education for students from preschool through college and workforce training; close the gaps in income inequality and economic prosperity; and meet targets in public safety, transportation, hunger, and more.

“The Sustainable Development Goals speak to some of the biggest challenges facing our cities and our world,” said Kaysie Brown, Head of Policy Planning at the UN Foundation. “L.A.’s bold and inclusive approach to this report — and to understanding how these challenges are interconnected — demonstrates the critical role cities can play in driving local action for global change.”

In 2017, with the support of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, Mayor Garcetti announced that Los Angeles would work to localize the goals and make significant progress ahead of the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Since then, the City has partnered with students and faculty from Occidental College, UCLA, USC, and Arizona State University to capture data and align current plans with the SDGs.

“Issues such as localization and building inclusive communities are important to us as a Foundation, and we are excited to see how the Mayor has built a coalition of university partners, civil society organizations, and other cities to advance the Global Goals,” said Shaheen Kassim-Lakha, Director of Strategic Partnerships at the Hilton Foundation. “We are especially glad that our initial investment has produced a review of this scope, and we hope L.A.’s rigorous approach will provide an example of leadership, accountability, and transparency for others.”

“Mayor Garcetti’s early leadership on adapting the SDGs to drive social progress in Los Angeles has been inspirational in building momentum among other mayors and cities in the U.S. and globally, reinforcing the importance of city leadership in advancing this agenda,” said Tony Pipa, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and former U.S. Special Envoy to the United Nations who led negotiations on the SDGs. “With this voluntary review, Los Angeles is clearly demonstrating the relevance of the SDGs to the daily lives of its citizens while building a platform for engagement with partners both local and global.”

The Mayor’s Office presented the VLR at an event with the World Council on City Data (WCCD) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) hosted by the Government of Canada, during the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development in New York City.