Staff shortages: Amsterdam police force wants to scrap serious crimes team
Staff shortages within the Amsterdam police force have gotten so bad that the team which deals with serious crimes might be disbanded. That team comprises around 30 agents, who would then be transferred to other departments by the end of the year. This is what the Amsterdam police are proposing to tackle staff shortages.
The fight against organised crime
Jan Struijs from the police union NPB called the proposal to disband the team “undesirable”. According to him, the team is “crucial in the fight against organised crime”. Many of the agents in the team don’t understand the idea either, with one stating: “At the moment, there is a lot to be done when it comes to drugs problems and assassinations in the city”.
Amsterdam has been the backdrop to many violent murders this year, the most high profile case being the assassination of lawyer Dirk Wiersum, who is believed to have been killed because he was representing a key witness in a case against a drug-centred criminal organisation. He was murdered in front of his house in Buitenveldert.
According to the Amsterdam police, making difficult decisions like this is unavoidable. A decision regarding the proposal to scrap the serious crimes team will be made in the coming weeks. On Thursday, November 21, the police unions presented a study that looked into police officers’ workloads. The unions are calling on politicians to make a clear choice regarding the tasks the police should be responsible for.