Over 85 percent support Zwarte Piet as-is

A study done by EenVandaag on 27 thousand members of an Opinion Panel found that 83 percent believe that Zwarte Piet's appearance should not be adjusted.

It was announced yesterday that Albert Heijn Piet will not be used in commercials. 83 percent of participants found that large retail chains should not make any adjustments.

While the majority of participants are against any adjustments, age and level of education play a role. People with a higher level of education are more willing to accept changes in Piet's appearance (23%) than those with a lower level of education (4%). People in the age group between 18 and 35 are more willing to accept changes (20%) than those over 65 (7%).

Other adjustments are also finding little support. 79 percent of participants think it is a bad initiative to make known Sinterklaas songs more neutral. The same applies to the plan of some toy brands to stop producing Zwarte Piet dolls - 85 percent are against it.

Only 23 percent of participants understand that people with a dark complexion experience Zwarte Piet as discriminatory. Members of Surinamese and Antillean origin regularly feel personally offended by racist remarks about Zwarte Piet.

Next week the appeal of the Amsterdam case about Zwarte Piet begins. The judge ruled that Zwarte Piet is a negative stereotype. Only 8 percent of participants agree. 88 percent think that the Zwarte Piet discussion should be conducted in society, not in court.

Many municipalities are waiting for the outcome of the Amsterdam case before deciding what the Piets will look like in the parades. The majority of respondents (82%) believe that Zwarte Piet should remain as is.

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