Without Past no Future
Ralf Krewinkel a new mayor of Heerlen ( South Limburg)
Ralf Krewinkel is a new mayor of Heerlen. In his interesting installation speech he devoted attention to several important issues such as cooperation within the city, within Parkstad region, South Limburg and the Euroregion, the role of migrants and the relevance of open society.
He said’’ Working together for Heerlen is my drive’’. Heerlen is the central city of the Parkstad region and Krewinkel stressed the importance of cooperation with other cities forming the Parkstad region. He stressed also the fact that the closer cooperation with Maastricht, Sittard-Geleen and the regional government can lead to more opportunities.
Working on the stimulation of the entrepreneurial spirit is also the priority of the new mayor. De Smart services Campus, Medtech-cluster in Trilandis/Avantis offer new work places in the region and stimulate the economy.
Ralf Krewinkel stressed out that working together on shaping the districts in Heerlen from the perspective of the open society is inscribed in the genes of the inhabitants of Heerlen. He reminded the audience of the fact that immigrants from various European countries came to Heerlen to work in the mines to help stimulate the local economy. The region Parkstad and Heerlen, as mayor Krewinkel states, has a strong bond with various European immigrants. According to Krewinkel, Heerlen must remain a hospitable city for the immigrants in the future, too.
Poles, for example, have been coming to the Netherlands and Limburg ever since the early twentieth century. First to work in the mines. According to historic archives around 1930 there were more or less 6000 Polish immigrants supporting the local mining industry in Parkstad. After World War II, some of the Poles who helped to liberate the Netherlands stayed in the Netherlands. During the Communist period, Poles sought refuge in the Netherlands and these days the glasshouses, factories and various other industries are significantly supported by the Polish immigrants. It is assessed that in the Parkstad region there are around 1500-2000 ( temporary) first generation Polish immigrants whose input is vital for the local economy.
2015 is the year of the mines ( M2015). Exactly 50 years ago, in 1965, Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs (and later Prime Minister), Joop den Uyl, announced the phased closure of the pits. A sudden end was brought to a period of unprecedented enterprise and prosperity
M2015 puts the Dutch mining history on the map, helping to preserve it for future generations. Krewinkel mentioned that this important period in the history of Heerlen cannot be forgotten at the end of the year, when the celebrations finish. Without Past there is no Future.
Strong, wise words. By respecting and not forgetting the past and those who created it powerful future can be created on the same powerful values.
By Beata Bruggeman-Sękowska
Ralf Karel Hubert Krewinkel (born November 12, 1974 in Kerkrade) is a Dutch politician of the Labour party (Partij van de Arbeid).
Since May 1, 2011 he has been mayor of the Limburg municipality Beek and previously a member of the city council of Kerkrade from 1998 to 2006 and an alderman of the same municipality from 2006 till May 1, 2011.
Installatiespeech burgemeester Ralf Krewinkel,