Dutch Liberals Call to Stop Funding “Anti-Integration Activities”

15 November 2011

The ruling Liberal Party (VVD) of the Netherlands has requested that its home affairs minister stop granting funds to initiatives which ‘get in the way of integration’, such as organizations which offer separate swimming lessons for women. Single-sex activities, organizations which “oppose homosexual rights” or whose “activities conflict with democracy” should no longer receive support, according to VVD MP Cora van Nieuwenhuizen. According to van Nieuwenhuizen, for instance, a refugee center with a separate computer room for women should not be funded as it sends out “conflicting messages about Dutch society.”

Hague cancels separate swimming times

The Islam Democrats (ID) party, which has held a seat on the Hague municipal council since 2006, has denounced the municipality’s decision to cancel gender segregated swimming used mostly by Muslim women. City officials made the decision on the basis that men and women should meet while exercising, while supporters of the separate swimming have denounced the decision as “symbol-politics”.