Netherlands to better address racism

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Netherlands needs to better address racism in society. Racism in a crime must be considered an aggravating circumstance . Also a national strategy is needed to combat discrimination on grounds of race.This is stated by the Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), of the international human rights organization Council of Europe, not to be confused with the EU institution, the European Council.

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47 European countries, including all EU Member States, are members of the Council of Europe, alongside countries such as Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia.

The committee published its fourth report on the Netherlands Tuesday. According to the ECRI there has been progress in combating racism since the earlier 2008 report, but there remain concerns.

ECRI regrets the planned cuts in policy and projects against discrimination. The committee wants the exploitation of temporary workers who are not resident in the Netherlands, to be addressed, for example, of Polish workers in the agricultural sector.

The committee criticizes the fact that certain politicians and media often portray Islam and Muslims, like the arrival of Eastern Europeans, as a threat to Dutch society.

Also there is no national policy to better fit the Roma and other gypsies into society, according to the report.

ECRI also slaps Netherlands on the wrist for discrimination during job interviews, in the entertainment industry, and in football stadiums.