Predominantly white youth council advices on racial profiling

During police checks in the Netherlands the police know where to find young people with a migrant background, but apparently they did not succeed very well when forming the youth council.

woensdag 18 april 2018

News from the Netherlands: Shortly after the Dutch police announced to undress young men wearing clothes and jewellery that look too expensive, the national police announced that it would set up a youth advisory board. Jan Willem, a Dutch police vlogger made a promotional video. On 16 April 2018, the police sent out a 'smashing' press release: the youth council was installed and the first advices were drafted.

On the first day there were two topics on the agenda. Cybersecurity and discrimination by the police. Please take a look at the pictures below and ask yourself: is this a group of young people who have experience with discrimination and are therefore the right advisers on discrimination by the police? 

In order to counter the image of a white youth council: the Dutch police explicitly underlines that two of the sixteen youngsters in the advisory board have a non-Western migration background. However looking at the published pictures: we see a group of youngsters who don’t represent the people that come (un)justified into contact with the police on a regular basis. To what extent can this group of young people provide the police with advice based on experience?

The advice that the youth council gave, according to the press release: "Officers have to get out of the car. Make small talk. Come in to our class to talk about their experiences. Play football with us, even if it's only for five minutes. That way they can win the trust of young people." The hundreds of youngsters that we've spoken to often complain about the 'small talks' because it feels like unjustified police checks. Further the advice that the youth council gave is not the core of the problem of racial profiling. It's much more than that. The police are aware of this and used the pressrelease and the youth council as a good publicity stunt. 

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