No fines, but help for Rotterdam homeless, Mayor Aboutaleb says

Rotterdam Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb (Picture: Twitter/@_sjgbb)Rotterdam Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb (Picture: Twitter/@_sjgbb)

Rotterdam mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb does not want to go through with an alcohol ban set to be implemented in Wijkpark Oude Westen next year. It is better to offer help instead of fining homeless people caught violating the alcohol ban, he said in the city council meeting, RTV Rijnmond reports.

The alcohol ban is intended to stop drinking homeless people from causing problems in the park. "It starts with a 90 euro fine that is not paid. Then the amount rises to 2,500 to 3,000 euro. If people want to re-socialize, they are faced with debts that we have caused", Aboutaleb said. Often the fines will be canceled to give someone a chance of a future, in any case.

Aboutaleb thinks that offering help and support to homeless people will be more effective. He called on the city council to work with the police and judiciaries to find new ways to do so.