The Polish community in the Netherlands is being urged to get out and vote in the March 19 local elections via a special campaign launched by website Polonia.nl.
In total, 11 Polish nationals, including eight first generation Polish women, are running as candidates, the website says.
It is urging the 70,000 strong Polish voter pool to get involved using the slogan ‘You are at home in Europe, go vote’. Some 200,000 Polish nationals currently live in the Netherlands.
‘The elections are a good way to make Poles in the Netherlands aware of their voting rights as EU citizens and to urge them to vote in both the local and the European elections,’ says Polonia.nl editor in chief Malgorzata Bos-Karczewska.
‘And by voting, Poles can show they are interested in what political parties are saying about them. It is very important to profile ourselves as EU citizens, not Oostblokkers.’
The Polish embassy in the Netherlands also supports the campaign and is glad to see ‘Poles active and participating in different walks of life including politics’, Bos-Karczewska said.
Polish candidates are standing in The Hague, Leidschendam-Voorburg, Breda, Diemen, Heusden and Westland. The youngest is 27-year-old Justyna Wachnicka, who is in fifth place on the CDA party list in The Hague.
Five (including one Polish national born in the Netherlands) are standing for the CDA, two for the VVD, one for D66, GroenLinks and the PvdA and one for local party Westland Verstandig.
‘The CDA with its Christian and family values appeals to Poles who come from a Catholic country where family is still a pillar of the society,’ Bos-Karczewska said.
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