Friday, March 11, 2016

Ministers scrap law banning non-religious events on Sunday morning

March 10, 2016 

The cabinet is going to withdraw a law which makes it an offence to organise public gatherings on Sunday mornings which are not of a religious nature.

Home affairs minister Ronald Plasterk said on Thursday he planned to scrap the law after various attempts by MPs to have it removed from the statute books.

The most recent attempt was made in 2012 when a majority of MPs called for its cancellation. Plasterk then refused because the government needed the support of two minor religious parties to win support for its financial reforms.

The impact of scrapping the law is likely to be largely symbolic. Local councils are already free to set their own conditions for Sunday meetings and in areas with a large number of orthodox Christians, they can also ban events from taking place.

The Sunday rest law came into effect in 1953.

In some parts of the Dutch Bible belt, even watching television on Sundays is forbidden.


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