House of Representatives: steps to preserve the operation of the parliamentary process

On Sunday March 15, the President of the House of Representatives, ms Khadija Arib, announced new steps in parliament to prevent the coronavirus from spreading. The parliamentary process will continue, but the number of physical debates will be reduced. Only debates that are of the utmost importance will continue to be held in the plenary hall; this goes for all debates concerning the coronavirus. The only plenary session during week 12 will be on Wednesday 18 March, when there will be a debate on the current government strategy to fight the coronavirus.

The Dutch House of Representatives will continue to fulfill its parliamentary duties, ms Arib emphasized. Members of Parliament will still be able to address written questions to the government, and committee debates will be changed to written procedures where possible.

Tuesday’s regular question hour has been cancelled, as have many committee meetings. Exception to this rule are technical briefings on the coronavirus. These will continue in the House.

All House personnel will be working from home, unless their presence in the House is essential. This goes for instance for personnel during the plenary meeting on Wednesday 18 March. All visits to parliament have been suspended, at least until April 6.

Live stream debates

Information about the plenary agenda and committee meetings is available at The Debat Direct app makes it possible to follow sittings in the House of Representatives live on a smartphone or tablet. Debat Direct is available for download in iOS and Android. Debat Direct is also available from the House of Representatives website: Debat Gemist (Missed Debate) makes it possible to catch up on previous parliamentary sittings. Debat Gemist is available from the House of Representatives website:

Finally, please note that these measures are of a temporary nature, and will be in effect until April 6. The Dutch House of Representatives is continuously monitoring the situation and will adapt its measures accordingly.