Most Dutch in favor of sheltering asylum seekers

Syrian asylum seekers (Photo: Mstyslav Chernov/Wikimedia Commons)Syrian asylum seekers (Photo: Mstyslav Chernov/Wikimedia Commons)

Last year 77 percent of Dutch adults felt that the Netherlands should shelter asylum seekers who fled their country due to war or persecution, according to a survey by Statistics Netherlands. Half said that asylum seekers who left their countries for economic reasons should not be allowed to live or work in the Netherlands.

22 percent of Dutch adults see the arrival of asylum seekers as a threat to safety in the Netherlands. Almost half of respondents disagreed with this statement. 27 percent think that asylum seekers pose a danger to Dutch standards and values, and 45 percent see no danger of that. 31 percent think that asylum seekers enrich the culture in the Netherlands, 36 percent disagree. 31 percent of respondents think that asylum seekers should be allowed to keep their own culture, 33 percent said they shouldn't. 

According to the stats office, people with a low education level and men are more negative about asylum seekers than women and highly educated people. The first group more often believes that asylum seekers pose a threat to Dutch safety, standards and values. 

Nearly a quarter of respondents, 24 percent, don't want an asylum center opening in their neighborhood, citing concerns of crime and nuisance. 36 percent said they would have no objection to an asylum center opening where they live, provided that there are some conditions. These include the center not being too big, not housing only men, and not being located too close to a school.