The Partij van de Arbeid (PvdA) was founded on the 9th February 1946 when the Social-Democratic Labour Party, the Freethinking Democratic Union and the Christen-Democratic Union decided to join forces and merge into one political party. Since that moment the PvdA has been continuously represented in the Dutch Parliament.
The PvdA has about 50.000 members, who together decide the direction of the party. Members are active in more than 400 local branches in twelve regions. Representatives of the local branches together form the Congress, which is the highest decision-making body of the party. Political councils of members are organized to advise the party in between congresses.
Since last general elections in 2012, the PvdA has 36 members (out of 150) in parliament. The PvdA is the second biggest faction in parliament after the liberal People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD). The VVD and the PvdA together form the cabinet, which is led by prime minister Rutte (VVD) and deputy prime minister Lodewijk Asscher (PvdA). The coalition agreement is called ‘Building Bridges’.
The composition of the Senate is based on the election results of the Provincial Councils. In this body the PvdA has 8 out of 75 seats.
Diederik Samsom was elected to the position of political leader by the members of the PvdA on the 16th of March 2012. Of the five candidates competing for this position, Samsom received the most votes (54%). Samsom has been a member of parliament since 2003, mostly as spokesperson on environmental affairs and since his election as political leader as leader of the parliamentary group of the PvdA. Before he joined the parliament he worked for Greenpeace.
The party board is elected by the Congress and is responsible for the general management of the party. At the moment the PvdA board consists of 11 members and is since January 2012 led by party chairman Hans Spekman.
The international secretary, Kirsten Meijer, was elected by the Congress in January 2012 and is also a member of the party board. She maintains international contacts and represents the PvdA in international social democratic party platforms such as the Party of European Socialists (PES) and the Progressive Alliance. In addition, she contributes to both the content and the organization of the international debate within the PvdA.
The international secretary is supported by Elmar Smid and more than forty volunteers who write articles for the website of the PvdA.
International resolution 2012
The congress of January 2012 adopted the resolution “Facing the world. The Netherlands and social democratic international policy”. The resolution highlights the direction of the PvdA in international policies in the context of a changed world. Please find the resolution here.
Partij van de Arbeid
PO Box 1310
1000 BH Amsterdam
Phone: +31 205512146