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Researcher raises questions over private security help

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

AMSTERDAM – The number of private security guards in the Netherlands is rapidly nearing the number of policemen on the street. The phenomena started with a debate over so-called volunteer stadswachten, people who were to act as the eyes and ears of the police but whose main role was seen as a signal to unruly youth that they were being monitored. Since then, numerous security firms were added to the mix, which now employ about 30,000 people. The police have a force of 36,000 on the street although their total number is 53,000, including support staff. A VU-researcher wonders whether this is a good development, asking the question, “who keeps check on private security people.”