Dutch Policing


There’s a lot of fuss on police blogs about the way we end up with no cops available to do coppering and loads of civvies and cops doing civvie work whilst keeping police pay and allowances.  No doubt truth underlies this somewhere.  The Netherlands has always seemed way ahead of the UK to me as a civilised nation and they have around 25 regionalised forces and a national coordinating unit.  When we were competing with the Dutch for world dominance through sailing ships and trade, Brits were inclined to say ‘and the Devil shits Dutchmen’.  We once learned a great deal from them and they once provided our King when all we could come up with were homosexual Scots (hardly a preclusion, but distinctly clueless).

The link above gives some detail on their police organisation and one wonders whether we should seek an expert from their ranks to reorganise ours.  This would make a lot of sense if our SMTs are as bad as often claimed from within the ranks, and they also have a proper police union.  One can see bureaucracy afoot in the PDF, but also some moves to counter it on a project team basis.  The general British reaction is stuff like ‘we do all this already’, but I doubt we understand the extent to which we have become rutted through our failures.  We probably need a radical shake-up to be able to innovate again and may have to copy a working model in the first place because we have become so reactionary and ‘stiff’.


5 thoughts on “Dutch Policing

  1. The link above didn’t bring anything up when I tried it, which may or may not be my old computer!

    The only thing I know about the Dutch is that they appear to use more common sense about the law on cannabis.

    I read in the press a while ago that the Dutch government advised their own police officers to avoid using the skunk variety of cannabis, either on or off duty, when research done upon the ‘skunk’ variety revealed there was a problem with it. In the genetic modification of cannabis into the skunk variety, a component that protects a user against developing any psychosis, was NOT present. In the original herb the chemical component that protects against users developing a psychosis is present.

    Typically, the previous government failed to take that into account, when considering whether to legalise cannabis. They also didn’t take into account the Royal Commission into drugs, and their classifications, nor their own experts on the subject!

    A similar situation to the Intelligence about the threat from Saddam and Iraq’s WMD’s – the government ignored the people who DID know what they were talking about. As per!

  2. The link works from here Intel- it’s pretty boring stuff. I’ve worked with French and Belgian police and not found them any better than we are – the Belgians were dreadful.
    You’d think we’d see more comparison in our debates on policing, but as Gadget points out not much more than ‘Bobbies on the beat’ trite seems to be brought out from the public.
    I’ve just scanned an old book on the opium wars (at the Guggenheim Project) that explodes some myths on that – phrases like ‘more deaths from drink amongst the relatively small ex-pat community than amongst Hong Kong Chinese’ stood out.
    Our inability to get facts into argument leaves me cold.

    • We need a fresh approach to drugs and I do think decriminalisation would be part of that. I think we need a Bill of Rights on work and quality of life. It all gets very hard as soon as we think about it.

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