Marga Klompé was a scientist and teacher who was active in the Dutch resistance during the Second World War. She became a member of the Dutch Parliament in 1948 and was one of the negotiators of the United Nations’ Universal Declaration on Human Rights.
Life and times
Klompé became the first female member of the European Coal and Steel Community’s Common Assembly, the forerunner of today’s European Parliament, which held its first session in 1952.
She left the Assembly in 1956 to join the Dutch centre-left coalition government, headed by Prime Minister Willem Drees. She was appointed as Minister of Social Work, becoming the Netherlands’ first female minister.
A vision for Europe
In 1955, Klompé was appointed to a working party set up by the Common Assembly that focused on:
- improving the operation and extending the powers of the European Coal and Steel Community
- creating a single market that extended beyond the coal and steel sector.
One of her biggest achievements as Minister was the country’s first law on universal social protection.
Marga Klompé during a debate in the Dutch House of Representatives
More about Marga Klompé’s life, work and contribution to the European project