Dutch police face shortage of 1,400 cops this year
The police in the Netherlands face a shortage of 1,400 police officers this year - about 3 percent of the total 47,000 jobs at the police. The police expect to have a full force again by 2025, NOS reports based on figures released by the National Police. This concerns shortages to the operational strength, the people who carry out the actual police work.
There are differences in occupancy between the regional units. The big cities face the most significant shortages. The Hague unit is short 383 full-time employees this year. That comes down to a 6.7 percent shortage on The Hague unit's force of 5,672 FTEs. Amsterdam and Rotterdam both have a shortage of over 275 police officers this year, or over 5 percent of the force. In contrast, the Noord-Nederland and Oost-Brabant units only short 4 and 13 cops respectively.
In an explanation of the shortages, the National Police told NOS that politicians and society not only expect more cops on the streets but also want the police to firmly tackle organized and subversive crime and pay more attention to digital crime. This comes along with a higher budget - 6.4 billion euros this year, over a billion more than in 2016 - but training new cops takes time.
"The police are a popular employer. Many people want to work for the police, and finding new colleagues is not yet a problem despite the tight labor market," the National police said to NOS. "However, strict selection and intensive, multi-year police training take time. The training capacity will be utilized to the maximum in the coming years."
At this point, the police always have 4,500 cops in training. Once operational strength is back in order in 2025, that will decrease to 4,000 trainees at any time.