The Municipality of Waalre will discuss Zwarte Piet with their local Sinterklaas organisations. That town’s council decided this on Tuesday evening.
D66 filed a motion at the meeting. The opposition party said the municipality should ‘enter into discussion with the relevant organisations. They must talk about the disadvantages of the current situation.’
‘The advantages of an adapted setting with Pieten (should also be discussed). (They don’t) all (have to be) black with stereotypical characteristics’. Also, according to D66, the council should no longer provide subsidies for activities that include Zwarte Pieten.
Yes to the first; no to the second
The parties agreed with the first point. But there was little support for the second point. The VVD’s Daan Damen says, “We shouldn’t force it from above.”
“We should facilitate dialogue in society”. The council’s widely supported this opinion. Waalre’s Mayor, Jan Brenninkmeijer, proposed to invite the Sinterklaas associations chairpeople to a council meeting. The whole council received this proposal positively.
After internal consultation, D66 dropped the motion’s second for the time being. They will bring it up during the talks with the Sinterklaas associations’ representatives. Precisely what that dialogue will involve isn’t yet known.
Editor: Melinda Walraven