Amsterdam police ends parties with only blackface Zwarte Piet; blackface not banned

Zwarte Pieten (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/EnSintClopedie). (Zwarte Pieten (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/EnSintClopedie))

The Amsterdam police will this year not be allowed to have internal Sinterklaas celebrations with their children with only blackface Zwarte Pieten. The parties will be allowed if Pieten of other colors are also present.

Amsterdam Police Chief Pieter-Jaap Aalbersberg wrote this in an internal memo to all his chiefs, the Telegraaf reports.

"From the them of 'inclusion and exclusion' I strongly recommend to the sector heads, team chiefs and employees to leave parts that can be experienced as discriminatory out of the Sinterklaas celebration", the three page memo titled "Sinterklaas problem" reads, according to the newspaper. "For example, the character Zwarte Piet can be given multiple colors."