On Monday, 12 November, Groningen’s Student Association for International Relations will host an English-language debate on the upcoming municipal elections.
The debate, which will be held at 8 p.m. on Monday, will include representatives from most or even all of the municipal parties: D66, VVD, GroenLinks, PvdD, CDA, 100% Groningen, Socialist Party (SP), the Labour Party (PvdA), Voor Stad en Ommeland, Christen Unie, Student en Stad, Sport-Partij and the PVV.
The English-language event is open to all, but the main goal of the debate is to help inform internationals who are eligible to vote about the local issues. Any EU citizens and people born outside the EU who have lived in the country for at least five years are entitled to vote in the local elections.
Groningen’s Student Association for International Relations, better known as SIB, writes that as the city’s foreign population grows, more political parties are competing to win their vote. “With international students increasing in number every year, thus becoming a more important electorate every year, more and more actors such as the municipality, political parties, and other organisations are trying to activate and inform international students of their rights to vote.” Groninger Politiek Jongeren Kontakt, GPJK, is also contributing to the event’s organisation.
Student life and sustainability
The present parties will present their positions on local issues such as student life and sustainability. The debate will be moderated by Esther van der Meer, the Groningen editor of Dagblad van het Noorden. Groningen mayor Peter den Oudsten, who is also the interim mayor of the newly merged municipality of Groningen, Haren and Ten Boer, will be on hand as well to kick off the evening. The debate is free of charge and will be held at the Raadszaal at City Hall on the Grote Markt.
Fewer than half of the parties running for election are participating in the debate. The parties that are not taking part are the Socialist Party, the Labour Party (PvdA), Voor Stad en Ommeland, Christen Unie, Student en Stad, Sport-Partij and the PVV.
|Curious to find out more about where the local parties stand on all the important local issues? Check out our complete guide to the Groningen municipal elections on Monday.|