Police oppose neighbourhood patrol
30 March 2007, AMSTERDAM – After initial support for the initiative, the Utrecht police have now said that they are against plans to set up a civilian neighbourhood patrol in the area of Ondiep.
30 March 2007
AMSTERDAM – After initial support for the initiative, the Utrecht police have now said that they are against plans to set up a civilian neighbourhood patrol in the area of Ondiep.
Residents had proposed a neighbourhood patrol after riots several weeks ago. The police announced their opposition to the plan at a residents' meeting last night, saying that monitoring order is a job for the police.
The police are going to open a hotline that residents can phone Thursdays through Sundays between the hours of 7 p.m. and midnight if they feel unsafe. The police will be on the site within 30 minutes, they say.
The neighbourhood meetings were called to discuss the problems that broke out in the area two weeks ago when a police officer shot and killed a resident.
The residents also discussed a number of other matters with neighbourhood alderwoman Rinda den Besten. One woman complained that surveillance cameras put up shortly after riots began have now been taken down. "The cameras made me feel safer." The spokesperson for the police said that the authorities had received complaints that neighbourhood residents felt unsafe because of the cameras.
A number of residents took the opportunity to vent their anger at the fact that the problems in Ondiep have been dealt with so ineffectively over the past years. Some said they felt let down. And some said they were angry that a shooting had to take place before anything was done.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]
Subject: Dutch news