Tuesday 21 March 2023

Government sets up new role of ‘MeToo’ government commissioner

Photo: Angeline Swinkels

Social Economic Council chairwoman Mariëtte Hamer will be taking on the newly created role of government commissioner for combating inappropriate behaviour and sexual violence.

‘Recent incidents in the world of sport and television show that there is still need for a MeToo movement in the Netherlands. The moment has come to force a breakthrough,’ education minister Robbert Dijkgraaf said, referring to the recent revelations surrounding The Voice of Holland talent show and Sunday’s shock resignation of Ajax director Marc Overmars for cyber flashing female staff.

Dijkgraaf said that such incidents can happen at any organisation and that awareness of this can only grow by actively discussing the problem.

Hamer, Dijkgraaf and social affairs minister Karien van Gennip’s brief is to put together a national action plan to combat inappropriate behaviour and sexual violence, and to promote a safe culture.

Hamer has been chairwoman of the SER since 2014 and will leave the post in April. Her own party, the PvdA, is currently embroiled in a #MeToo case involving MP Gijs van Dijk who stepped down on Tuesday following accusations of inappropriate behaviour.

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