Roaming caravan residents on blacklist used by many municipalities: report
Many Dutch municipalities have a blacklist consisting of residents of roaming caravans, De Stentor reports based on its own research. If the authorities receive a tip, the caravan residents are more likely to be suspected than other residents, according to the newspaper.
The Netherlands has an estimated 60,000 to 70,000 caravan dwellers. The National Coordinator against Discrimination and Racism (NCDR) called the existence of this blacklist worrying, especially after the Tax Authority’s institutional racism scandal. “We did not know about this list yet, but we will certainly look at it carefully,” a spokesperson said to De Stentor.
In general, the government and government services need to be cautious when using lists, the spokesperson said. “In its role as watchdog, the NCDR intends to closely examine in which places the government made use of comparable lists and to investigate them to see whether there is exclusion and stigmatization on the basis of grounds as referred to in Article 1.” Article 1 of the constitution is on equal treatment and non-discrimination.
According to the newspaper, the Ministry of Justice and Security drew up the blacklist. A spokesperson said it was a first step to test the value of a signal and saw nothing discriminatory about it.
Lawyer Sjoerd Jaarsma, who specializes in cases involving caravan residents, disagrees. “This is, of course, stigmatizing and even discriminatory, in my opinion. Equal cases should be treated equally, and that does not seem to happen here,” he said to the newspaper.