Paul Blokhuis

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Paul Blokhuis
Paul Blokhuis (2017).jpg
Blokhuis in 2017
State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport
In office
26 October 2017 – 10 January 2022
Prime MinisterMark Rutte
Preceded byMartin van Rijn
Succeeded byMaarten van Ooijen
Personal details
Born
Paulus Blokhuis

(1963-11-14) 14 November 1963 (age 58)
Zuidhorn, Netherlands
NationalityDutch
Political partyChristian Union
Alma materLeiden University

Paulus "Paul" Blokhuis (born 14 November 1963) is a Dutch politician serving as State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport in the Third Rutte cabinet since 2017. He is a member of the Christian Union (CU).[1]

Family and education[edit]

Paul Blokhuis was born in Zuidhorn as the son of the Dutch-reformed reverend Bert Blokhuis, who officiated in the country's northern countryside. He was raised in Wezep and Schiedam. He has seven siblings, including music expert and journalist Leo Blokhuis and twin brother Rev. Fred Blokhuis.[2]

His daughter, Julia, 18, died in February 2018 a few days after being admitted to the University Medical Center in Utrecht with severe cognitive loss symptoms, believed to be caused by an autoimmune disease. She was the youngest of Blokhuis and his wife Ida's four daughters.[3]

Blokhuis studied history at Leiden University.

Career[edit]

In 1990 he started as employee of the Reformatory Political Federation (RPF) faction in the House of Representatives, and later worked for the Christian Union, a merger of the small Christian parties RPF and Reformed Political League (GPV).[4] He developed himself as specialist on infrastructure and water management, social policy and economy. Between 1988 and 1993, he chaired RPF-jongeren, the youth organisation of the RPF, which expanded under his chairmanship. He also chaired the CU electoral associations in Wapenveld, Heerde and Woerden.[5]

Political involvement[edit]

Local politics[edit]

Starting in 1998, Blokhuis was representing the CU in two city council committees in Apeldoorn. In the 2003 general election, he was placed 19th on the party's list of candidates for the House of Representatives.

Blokhuis was elected the same year to the States-Provincial of Gelderland. He was the party's lijsttrekker in the 2006 municipal elections in Apeldoorn; three councillors were elected. Blokhuis became the alderman in charge of Welfare, Health, Services and Facilities.[6] After the elections of 2010, he retained his position.

Blokhuis resigned on 9 February 2012 together with three other aldermen after the publication of a report on the loss of millions by the municipality in selling property. His resignation was accepted on 10 March; two weeks later, he was re-appointed after new negotiations for a coalition. In 2016, he was involved in discussions around the permission for more gambling machines in the city, which he objected to. As a majority of the municipal council was in favor of the decision, he noted an official objection in the records but did not formally oppose the decision.[7]

National politics[edit]

On 26 October 2017, after the finalisation of the negotiations on a coalition including the CU for the national government, Blokhuis was announced as State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sports in the Third Rutte cabinet. His portfolio includes Mental Healthcare, Veteran Affairs and Wellness Promotion.

In november 2018, he presented the Prevention Agreement, an agreement concluded between the government, social organizations and private companies aimed at making Dutch people healthier. One of these measures is the implementation of plain packaging for cigarettes in the Netherlands scheduled for the 1.October 2020. This measure is meant to make smoking less attractive to young people in particular.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ministerie van Algemene Zaken. "CV". www.rijksoverheid.nl (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  2. ^ "Familiegesprek met de broers Blokhuis - NOS Met het Oog Op Morgen". NPO Radio 1 (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  3. ^ STATE SECRETARY BLOKHUIS BACK AT WORK AFTER DAUGHTER'S DEATH
  4. ^ "Profiel: Paul Blokhuis (ChristenUnie), staatssecretaris Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport | NU - Het laatste nieuws het eerst op NU.nl". www.nu.nl. Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  5. ^ Pubble.nl. "Oud-Wapenvelder Paul Blokhuis staatssecretaris in nieuw kabinet". VeluwsNieuws. Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  6. ^ "Blokhuis vindt wethouderschap 'prachtige baan". www.destentor.nl (in Dutch). 2006-11-03. Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  7. ^ De Stentor. "Wethouder fel tegen meer gokkasten in Apeldoorn". www.destentor.nl (in Dutch). Retrieved 2018-01-03.
  8. ^ NETHERLANDS TO IMPOSE BORING PACKAGING ON CIGARETTES FROM 2020

External links[edit]

Official
Political offices
Preceded by State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport
2017–present
Incumbent