Fewer discrimination reports filed with police

Police uniform
Police uniform. (Photo: Politie)

Last year 3,499 discrimination incidents were registered with the police in the Netherlands, a decrease of 20 percent compared to 2016. The decline is particularly visible at police units Amsterdam, Midden-Nederland and Oost-Nederland, according to figures the police released on Thursday, NOS reports.

A total of 603 discrimination reports involved violence. Like in 2016, the most common ground for discrimination was the victim's descent. There were 1,450 incidents of discrimination based on descent. In more than a third of these cases, the discrimination had to do with the victim's skin color.

Just over a quarter of the cases involved discrimination based on the victim's sexual preference, a slight decrease compared to the year before. 284 cases involved anti-Semitism, about the same as in 2016. The number of incidents of discrimination against Muslims decreased from 352 in 2016 to 192 last year. 

Last year 13 thousand discrimination reports were filed with the police, municipal discrimination authorities, the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights and MiND, the hotline for online discrimination. According to Ed Faas, the police's national project leader for combating discrimination, the police are investing in training and information in order to help police officers recognize discrimination quicker. "If there was no criminal offense, it is important to refer the victim of discrimination to the right authority", he said.