Police shortage looms as more cops retire
In the coming years, the Dutch police will face a shortage of officers on the streets, especially on night shift and in the rural areas, managers at the National Police, police union NPB and the Police Academy leaders warned in the Volkskrant.
The main reason for the threatening shortage, is the large number of officers that will retire in the coming years. A total of 14 thousand officers will retire over the next seven years. In combination with that, too few new officers were trained over the past years. Due to budget cuts, the Police Academy only trained 1 thousand instead of 2 thousand new officers, leading to a skewed age structure within the police. This is also the reason that night shifts will face the most shortages - officers over the age of 55 don't work night shift.
"We already repeatedly called for attention from the corps leadership for this strategic problem, but the answer was always: there is no money", Jan Struijs, chairman of NPB, said to the Volkskrant. The extra money the new government promised the police budget, is not enough by far, he added. "I hope that the eyes of politicians will finally open."
Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security previously announced that 100 million euros will be invested into more police officers. The Police Academy will receive around 8 percent extra in the coming years, increasing its training capacity by 200 officers, according to the broadcaster.
The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, is discussing the Ministry of Justice and Security budget with Minister Grapperhaus on Wednesday.