Amsterdam police chief wants more ethnically diverse police force

Police officers on the street
Police officers on the street. (Photo: Politie)

Amsterdam police chief Pieter-Jaap Aalbersberg is aiming for a more a more ethnically diverse police force. He wants half of the vacancies at the city's police to be filled by people with an immigrant background. "We need people who understand the city", he said to broadcaster NOS. 

He plans to actively approach people in Amsterdam, personally and on social media, and ask them if they want to work for the police. According to Aalbersberg, just posting vacancies online doesn't work. "Then we get a lot of candidates who live in different parts of the country. No, we will actively approach people." he said to NOS. "I ask everyone in the police to use their network to approach people in their family. All neighborhood police officers know boys and girls who would do well in the police."

At this stage only about 18 percent of the Amsterdam police force are cops whose families are from abroad.

Last month National Police Chief Erik Akerboom said that there is a. Only about one in five new officers have a diverse background.