Spike in complaints about bothersome young people during pandemic
The police are receiving more and more complaints about young people who cause nuisance. That reports data journalism news agency LocalFocus based on police figures. In the first half of this year, there were more than 70,000 reports. In the same period in 2019, there were almost 40,000.
This concerns reports in which complaints were made about youth, and in particular about minor incidents such as leaving rubbish lying around, hanging around in a park or making noise. More serious offenses such as vandalism, assault and rowdiness are not included.
The corona crisis appears to be causing a significant spike in youth nuisance reports, according to LocalFocus. In 2020, the first 'corona year', the total number of reports doubled compared to the previous year to a record high. In the first six months of this year, there were also considerably more complaints.
Until May, the catering industry was closed as a result of the lockdown measures and a (varying) number of maximum visitors applied at home, so young people were unable to go out and it was less easy to gather at home. However, according to the police, the increase in complaints does not necessarily mean that young people really caused more nuisance: when people are at home they see more and may also report nuisance more quickly.
The number of reports increased in all twelve provinces, but especially in Zeeland, Noord-Brabant and Overijssel there were considerably more complaints about youth nuisance in the past six months. In Zeeland, this number was almost two and a half times higher than in the first half of 2019. In Brabant and Overijssel, the number of complaints rose by 128 and 114 percent respectively.
In Utrecht, the increase in the number of reports - compared to the situation before corona - was the most limited at 65 percent. Yet in that province the most complaints were made in relative terms in the past six months: 63 reports per 10,000 inhabitants. The national average is about 40 complaints per 10,000 inhabitants.
Of the twenty largest municipalities, Arnhem, Eindhoven, Haarlemmermeer and Enschede, among others, stand out because of a significant increase in the number of nuisance reports compared to the first six months of 2019. Of this group, the municipality of Utrecht and Amersfoort relatively had the most complaints.
Reporting by ANP.