Police plan more labor actions; unions willing to restart contract talks

The police unions are willing to restart collective bargaining agreement talks with Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus of Justice and Security. But to keep the pressure on the Minister, police officers will start a series of protest actions, the unions announced on Tuesday after talking with their members, RTL Nieuws reports.

The first action will happen at the Decibel Outdoor festival in Beekse Bergen this weekend. No police officers will be deployed to the festival, union ACP director Gerrit van de Kamp said. According to him, some 300 police officers are usually deployed to this festival. But this year the police will only respond for serious offenses. 

"The police are not only for crime, maintaining public order is also demanding more and more", he said, according to RTL. "And look at the events calendar. It is bizarrely full. Here too officers are needed." According to the unions, there are almost a thousand festivals in the Netherlands where police deployment is needed. 

Collective bargaining agreement talks between the unions and the Ministry of Justice and Security have been deadlocked for a while. The unions previously rejected an offer for a 7 percent wage increase. Over the past weeks police officers protested by, among other things, not issuing or collecting fines. 

ACP previously said that this is not only about higher wages, but also about changes that need to be made in the police organization. "The National Police is full of form-errors, the personnel policy is not working and the workload is massive. It can not continue like this."