Dutch have most confidence in police, least in church

Dutch police officers responding to a report of a crime
Dutch police officers responding to a report of a crimePhoto: Politie

Dutch people's confidence in each other and in the institutions increased almost across the board last year, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Monday. The Dutch have most confidence in the police with 74.5 percent saying they trust the police, and least in the church with only 31.2 percent.

Confidence in other people increased from 59.9 percent in 2016 to 62.2 percent last year. In addition to the police, the Dutch also have more confidence in judges and the army than in each other. Though the army is the only Dutch institution that saw confidence in it decrease last year, if only slightly. Last year 64.8 percent of Dutch had confidence in the army, 0.1 percent less than the year before.

Over 40 percent of Dutch have confidence in officials, the European Union and the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament. Just under 40 percent have confidence in banks and large companies. Confidence in the press and churches are the lowest at 31.9 percent and 31.2 percent respectively.

According to the stats office, young people and highly educated people tend to have more confidence in institutions and other people than older people and people with a lower education level. There are also regional differences. For example, in eastern Groningen less than 50 percent of people have confidence in their fellow human beings, while this percentage is over 65 percent in other northern regions like Gooi and Alkmaar. 

Dutch people's confidence in institutions and other people in 2017:

  • Police - 74.5 percent (+4.2 percent)
  • Judges - 72.9 percent (+1.4 percent)
  • Army - 64.8 percent (-0.1 percent)
  • Other people - 62.2 percent (+2.3 percent)
  • Officials - 45.5 percent (+2.9 percent)
  • European Union - 43.1 percent (+7.1 percent)
  • Tweede Kamer - 40.8 percent (+4.0 percent)
  • Banks - 39.9 percent(+3.6 percent)
  • Large companies - 39.4 percent (+2.0 percent)
  • Press - 31.9 percent (+0.7 percent)
  • Churches - 31.2 percent (+0.8 percent)