Humanity in Action on Tour in the Netherlands

October 28, 2012 | hia programs, free speech

In October 2012, Humanity in Action The Netherlands (HIA NL) organized “HIA on Tour”, a series of debating seminars in Nijmegen, Groningen and Rotterdam. Through this tour, HIA NL aimed to raise national awareness about the importance of freedom and democracy in The Netherlands. The main topic of debate was the tension between important Dutch constitutional laws: freedom of speech, freedom of religion and the prohibition of discrimination. HIA on Tour debates were held in selected schools during the day, and in cultural centers during the evening. The tour deliberately took place outside of the usual scope of HIA NL. A total of approximately 225 high school students participated, and the evening debates were open to the public.

During both events, participants were asked to vote in favor of or opposed to propositions related to freedom and discrimination. Political journalist and experienced moderator Wouke van Scherrenburg would spark discussion amongst the public with her sharp observations and questions after each proposition. The evening sessions included a discussion between two expert guest speakers (politicians, journalists, academics, authors), as well as a live column by columnist and author Johan Fretz.

HIA NL is hoping to organize another tour date in Amsterdam in November. More information will be available soon on this website, and on

Our activities are made possible by the vfonds, with funds from the BankGiro Loterij and the Lotto. We therefore warmly recommend that you participate in these lotteries. We also received support from campaigning buro BKB.


Tour dates & speakers:

October 1st: Nijmegen 
(Karel de Grote College, LUX. Speakers:  Martijn van Dam & Yasmine Allas)
October 8th: Groningen
(Werkman College, Forum Images. Speakers: Johan Fretz, Marietje Schaake & Meindert Fennema)
October 15th: Rotterdam
(CSG Calvijn, De Unie: Speakers: Johan Fretz, Kader Abdolah and Kustaw Bessems)

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