PvdA: NL Labour Party | Electoral manifest Amsterdam

Foreword by Marjolein Moorman, leader PvdA Amsterdam

Dear citizen of Amsterdam,

Fighting for the soul of Amsterdam, because we love our city. That is what the elections next March are all about. And that is what the plans and ambitions that are laid out in our PvdA programme are all about. Amsterdam is the most beautiful city on earth in my view. It is not only physically beautiful, but the people that live here make it particularly beautiful. A diverse group of individuals; of all ages, incomes and backgrounds, who together make the city. Amsterdam thanks its soul to its citizens, who all contribute in their own way. Together they shape our city, in which there should be room for everyone to become who they want to become and to be who they want to be. It is this combination of dreams and ambitions that makes our city vibrant and alive.

As a social democrat I am proud that the PvdA has made a significant contribution to the rich history of Amsterdam. We have always fought for equal opportunities and the freedom to develop oneself. Today however, we are at a turning point. The ideal of equal opportunities for everyone is under pressure, and therewith our city too. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find an affordable home in Amsterdam. The gap between rich and poor is widening. Prices are being pushed up by investors for their own gain, without giving something back to the city. If we are not careful, our beautiful, social city will change into an amusement park for those with money. 

That is why the elections in March are crucial. Do we choose to become a cold global metropolis, or do we want to remain a city where we look after each other? Do we build only for the rich, or do we want to invest in affordable housing? Do we want to allow the opportunities of our children to be determined by their background, or do we want to make sure every child gets a fair chance at a good future? Do we close our eyes for the climate crisis, or safeguard a sustainable future? Do we allow people to be excluded, or do we make sure everyone can participate?

The choices of the PvdA are clear. We make inequal investments to create equal opportunities. We ensure that those who require more help, get more help. We believe that we all benefit from a society where everyone thrives. We do not only think about the present, but also about the future. Amsterdam proves to us that a city is more beautiful if you give people the chance to develop. That is why this programme lays out beautiful plans for the future of Amsterdam; a city for which I will fight with my heart and soul. 

Happy reading!

Marjolein Moorman


Affordable housing

Houses are made to live in, not for making a profit only. To solve the housing crisis we need to build affordable homes, but at the same time not blindly chase new-build records. It is just as important to ensure the existing housing stock remains affordable and sustainability is improved.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • The PvdA builds neighbourhoods. We aim to build 7,500 affordable homes every year in mixed neighbourhoods. 40% of these homes should be social housing.
  • Newly built houses should contribute to a liveable city in which also those living in the existing neighbourhoods feel at home. The PvdA believes that everyone deserves a home, irrespective of their income, background or family situation.
  • We want to make homes more accessible and affordable for young adults, families and the elderly. We aim to achieve this through more regulation of rental and purchase prices. 
  • The PvdA sees the energy transition as a chance to renovate all homes in the city whilst simultaneously making them sustainable. We believe all houses in Amsterdam should have at least energy label B by 2030, starting with those neighbourhoods that have the lowest quality houses. In this way inhabitants of Amsterdam who have little, profit first and most from the energy transition. We believe the climate crisis needs to be solved in a social manner.
  • The PvdA aims to make the neighbourhoods of Nieuw-West (New West), Zuidoost (South-East) and Noord (North) more accessible, and increase and improve the facilities in these areas.

Quality education

We create equal opportunities through unequal investments in education in Amsterdam. By investing more in those places that need it most we ensure a high quality education for all children in Amsterdam.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We make unequal investments for equal opportunities. With a special subsidy ‘Kansenaanpak’, those schools that need it most can receive support, extra lesson time and language lessons. A part of this subsidy is the ‘Grotestedenbonus’, which gives all teachers in Amsterdam a yearly bonus; for teachers at schools where the shortage of teachers is highest, this bonus will be three times as high.
  • We further combat the shortage in teachers by stimulating and enabling career switches to this valuable profession as well as by providing extra support and training to teachers. In this way they can focus on their main task: teaching. In addition we give teachers priority access to rental houses and parking in the city.
  • We aim to continue to stimulate the ‘brede brugklas’ with a bonus, combining different school levels in the transition from primary to secondary school. The Dutch system currently requires a very early decision as to which level of secondary school is suitable for a child. For many children this decision moment comes far too early. We aim to delay this moment and keep children together in a more diverse class for longer. Schools that combine at least three levels in a class receive a bonus.
  • We support and emphasise the strength of vocational (MBO) students, who are a crucial group in Amsterdam. We support students with study areas and discounts for sports and cultural activities. We aim to end the undervaluation of vocational education. Therefore we invest extra in these programmes, aiming to end the shortage of internships, providing extra support to younger students and making sure that these students too get a title upon graduation.
  • We continue the Amsterdam ‘family school’ and expand it where possible. We provide extra financial support to schools to support families in need.

A green future

Amsterdam should be a global pioneer on the road to a green future. However, we must do so in a ‘red’, social manner. A sustainable future needs to be made as affordable as possible and achieved in collaboration with our citizens. By giving priority to neighbourhoods with badly insulated houses, we use the energy transition also as a way to reduce inequality.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We start by improving the insulation of those homes that need it most, so that the inhabitants can save energy and costs. We make sure all houses have reached at least an energy label B by 2030 in an affordable manner.
  • We use solar and wind power to generate green electricity. We utilise the built environment to install as many solar panels as possible. We do not import biomass. We do invest in the capacity of the grid.
  • The energy transition will only be successful if there is support for it. Therefore we enable neighbourhood energy cooperatives to co-invest in projects, we establish heating authorities and give citizens living nearby wind turbines a share of their profits.
  • We make the city visibly greener. We plant more trees in the city and build in a nature-inclusive manner. In this way we increase the biodiversity in the city as well as make it more resistant to heat, drought and heavy rainfall.
  • We stimulate a clean and circular city. We aim to give back the autonomy over waste collection to the districts of the city so that neighbourhoods become cleaner again, and we introduce a regional resource cooperative with participation by citizens. In this way we make neighbourhoods clean again while simultaneously improve waste processing.

An inclusive city

We promise an inclusive city, where everyone is treated equally. A city where everyone can not only participate, but also take part in decision-making. Enough policies have been written about this topic, it is now time for action. We do not tolerate any form of discrimination, exclusion or intolerance and we stand up for the safety of all inhabitants of Amsterdam.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We fight discrimination in the labour market. The workplace needs to be more inclusive, and the municipality needs to lead by example.
  • Women and LHBTQIA+’ers experience unsafe situations on a daily basis. This is unacceptable. Therefore we invest more in law enforcement and the prosecution of perpetrators. 
  • We ensure that handicapped people can use public space independently.
  • We ensure that inhabitants of Amsterdam are aware of the different stories from our history. The first of July, Keti Koti, should be a bank holiday.
  • The municipality of Amsterdam provides a two months leave for partners of those that have given birth.

Good jobs in a fair economy 

We work to ensure that everyone has access to good jobs, by giving a helping hand to those in poverty and debt. We invest in the sustainable economy of the future. 

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We ensure everyone has access to a good job and fair compensation. This entails providing more job security with fixed contracts, more employee control and a salary of at least 120% of the minimum wage. The municipality leads by example, including through agreements with suppliers. We continue to fight false self-employment, for example in the platform economy.
  • We take a hard stance on discrimination in the labour and internships market. We ensure everyone has access to the labour market irrespective of age or background, through measures such as personalised schooling. Labour market discrimination is a crime.
  • We continue to support entrepreneurs that have been hit by COVID-19. We stimulate entrepreneurship in neighbourhoods and buying local products. In this way we encourage a strong neighbourhood economy.
  • We build a new circular economy that works for everyone. The climate crisis is an opportunity for more (green) jobs, for both vocationally and theoretically educated people. Furthermore, creating a sustainable labour market in Amsterdam also requires making the city an attractive and affordable place to live.
  • We continue to focus on preventing problematic debt by improving access to information and providing local support in neighbourhoods. Thus, we ensure that everyone who needs help gets the right support as soon as possible.

Safe and livable neighbourhoods

In Amsterdam it’s safe to be yourself. We choose to take a pragmatic, workable approach to safety focussing on neighbourhood level and on providing opportunities for young people.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • Everyone in Amsterdam should be able to be who they are. We believe there should be more opportunities for victims of racism and discrimination to file suit. In addition, we invest in specialised police teams and fight public intimidation.
  • We invest extra in those neighbourhoods with the biggest problems, reinstall the neighbourhood cop and choose a local approach to safety, developed together with the inhabitants and businesses in the neighbourhood.
  • We invest in the youth rather than cut back expenditures on them. We provide them with tailor-made opportunities and prioritise preventing the next generation to become drugs criminals.
  • We discuss the possession of weapons with youth, their parents and schools to increase awareness and we provide more opportunities to anonymously dispose of weapons. In addition we introduce more specialised policemen and implement a clear norm: possession of a weapon is not normal and we aim to prevent this.
  • We protect victims of human trafficking and extortion. We help entrepreneurs by combatting criminal activities, invest in detection, law enforcement and the prevention of organised crime.

Accessible neighbourhoods

Amsterdam as the ‘ten-minute city’, in which cyclists and pedestrians have sufficient space and cars are guests. Public transport must be affordable and accessible for everyone.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • The standard speed limit in the city becomes 30 km/hour. This will make the city safer for everyone, more accessible and more liveable.
  • We improve safety in traffic through better law enforcement and by placing traffic cameras. By increasing and improving so-called ‘bicycle streets’, where cars are guests, we increase the space for and safety of cyclists.
  • We make public transport more accessible and affordable by making public transport outside of the ring-road cheaper, closing the subway-loop and by introducing a night-subway line. We also improve the accessibility of the city from abroad with more and faster international train connections for destinations less than 750 km away, during the day as well as at night.
  • By expanding and improving shared transportation we make sure that public space is used more fairly while at the same time becoming safer and more sustainable. We regulate shared transportation companies to ensure these facilities are provided throughout the entire city, for an affordable price and with limited data collection.
  • We invest in the maintenance of roads, canal walls and bridges. We prioritise those bridges and canals that require maintenance to prevent unsafe situations.

Quality healthcare

Good healthcare is always close by for everyone and we invest in prevention by encouraging healthy lifestyles.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We ensure there are sufficient healthcare professionals in the city by giving these professions priority access to housing, free access to public transport and parking in the city. We also reduce the amount of administration required from healthcare professionals.
  • We ensure that inhabitants of Amsterdam, young and old, can always be helped in their own neighbourhood. We work with special neighbourhood teams (‘buurtteams’) and focus on the neighbourhoods most in need. We prioritise prevention, flagging problems with children early on and stimulating the elderly to continue to live at home as long as possible in elderly-friendly neighbourhoods.
  • We encourage a healthy lifestyle through programmes at school, increased collaboration between sports and healthcare organisations and use public space to enable sports and healthy, local food.
  • We ensure the continuity of healthcare and pay attention to self-organisation. We improve the agreements made with healthcare providers, taking into consideration people with diverse cultural backgrounds and young adults.
  • We make sure that everyone has access to mental healthcare close to home.

An active city

Sport and activity is passion, achievement, fun and healthy. It is a public good that needs to be accessible for everyone.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • We want all inhabitants of Amsterdam to play sports or be active, starting from an early age. We encourage this by aiming to have a gym teacher at every primary school, introducing neighbourhood sport coaches and increasing the number and utilisation of sport facilities such as swimming pools.
  • We strengthen sport clubs and encourage collaboration between neighbourhood organisations. We invest more in the neighbourhoods that need it most.
  • Poverty should not prevent playing sports. Therefore we improve the collaboration between sport clubs, schools and organisations like the Youth Sport Fund (‘Jeugdsportfonds’).
  • In every neighbourhood one should be able to be active. Therefore we expand sport facilities in existing neighbourhoods and ensure sufficient space is reserved for sports in new neighbourhoods.
  • Professional athletes are important examples to inspire our youth. Therefore we believe Amsterdam should become even more of a home to professional sports. We expand the ‘top sport center’ where talented athletes can develop themselves.

Art and culture for everyone

Amsterdam breathes culture and art, and that should never change. Cultural institutions are socially and economically crucial for the city. And so are artists who therefore deserve fair compensation. That is why the PvdA wants to increase the budget for culture.

Our 5 most important measures:

  • Artistic hubs are crucial, but are under increasing pressure as a result of the current housing market. Therefore the PvdA believes the number of artistic hubs needs to be increased, for example by allocating municipal real estate that is temporarily not in use to this end.
  • The position of people active in this sector has worsened. Significant investments are required and subsidies need to be more accessible for artists and young creators.
  • The PvdA believes that there should be a library in every neighbourhood as a central meeting place. Therefore we aim to expand the network of libraries. 
  • Education about art and culture is incredibly important for the development of the children in Amsterdam. Therefore we deepen these school programmes, give every school and extra art teacher and increase the number of culture coaches. In doing so we pay extra attention to vocational education.
  • Amsterdam has a wealth of heritage which deserves to be protected. However, decision-making regarding this topic is often very technical, and irreversible. The PvdA believes it is important that the municipality encourages the participation of inhabitants in these decisions.

A trustworthy government that is close by

Only when the government trusts its citizens, will they trust the government. The PvdA fights for an open government that encourages personal contact with citizens and fewer forms. We stand for a government that focusses on people instead of algorithms. 

Our 5 most important measures:

  • Inhabitants of Amsterdam should not have to wait for hours when calling, or communicate with robots and paper instead of people. We will end employee shortages in public services.
  • We ensure the municipality communicates in a way that is understandable for everyone.
  • We aim to ensure that decisions regarding neighbourhoods are made at the lowest level of government, thus strengthening the democracy in city districts.
  • The role of the municipal mediator (‘ombudsman’) is strengthened.
  • The municipality is trustworthy, also digitally. The PvdA wants the municipality to work towards accessible and user-friendly services, transparent algorithms and open source systems.