VtdK Symposium 1 October 2016: ‘Quacks’ Tax-exempt Status a Legal Error?’

The Dutch Society against Quackery, Vereniging tegen de Kwakzalverij (VtdK), will hold its annual symposium on 1 October 2016 at De Nieuwe Liefde in Amsterdam. This year, the conference will focus on the tax-exempt status of many alternative therapists, which might lead to the promotion of quackery, and giving it undue legitimacy.

– Prof. dr. René van der Paardt, professor in excise taxes at Erasmus University Rotterdam
– Dr. Cees Renckens, honorary chair of the VtdK and emeritus gynaecologist
– Mr. Saskia Huizer, tax advisor, specialises in VAT, Rotterdam

The symposium will start with the presentation of the Master Quack Award to whoever promoted quackery the most this year in the Netherlands (read here who were nominated). Also, the Bruinsma Brothers Medal will be awarded to Henk van Gerven, MP for the Socialist Party, who has a long record of questioning and criticising dubious medical practices both within regular medicine as well as numerous alternative therapies.

Entrance fees are high for non-members; they are recommended to join the Society, or go along with a member as an introducee.

Henk van Gerven receives Bruinsma Medal for fighting quackery

The Dutch Society against Quackery, Vereniging tegen de Kwakzalverij (VtdK), has awarded the 2016 Bruinsma Brothers Medal to Member of Parliament Henk van Gerven (Socialist Party). The Society praises him for his long record of fighting dubious medical practices:

Henk van Gerven in 2012. (Bas Stoffelsen / SP CC-BY-SA 4.0)

Van Gerven’s Socialist Party (SP) has revealed itself as a party that doesn’t just combat abuses in regular medicine, but also deals with quackery in our country. Unlike other parties, the SP has consistently denounced all unproven therapies. The party’s parliamentary questions about non-regular medicine, first by Agnes Kant, and in the last ten years by former GP Henk van Gerven, are numerous. The jury ruled that both were very well aware of the dangers of such types of medicine.

Van Gerven will be presented with the award during the upcoming VtdK Symposium on 1 October in Amsterdam.

The Bruinsma Brothers Medal (Gebroeders Bruinsma Erepenning) was introduced at the occasion of the VtdK’s 125th anniversary. The name refers to the brothers Gerard and Vitus Bruinsma, who founded the Society in 1880, making it the oldest skeptical organisation in the world.