Police about Safe at Home reports: ‘Children’s safety comes first’ 5:27 PM in Binnenland Safe at Home was critical of the reports by the police from parents who had taken their children to the climate demonstration last Saturday.

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Climate activists on the A12 last Saturday
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The police still support the reports made to the Safe at Home hotline in response to parents who took their children to the Extinction Rebellion demonstration on the A12 on Saturday. The police also say they will report any new highway blockades if children are arrested.

Safe at Home criticized the reports last night. According to the reporting center, a report should not be used as a kind of threat or potential punitive measure.

The reports were made in good faith, the police wrote in a response today. “It has nothing to do with a threat, punishment or an opinion about the demonstration. The safety of children is our top priority.”

The police point out that the protests on the A12 are illegal and that the police have been ordered to end them. Force may be used, with the use of mobile units and water cannons. “Dangerous situations can therefore arise,” says Martine Dijkstra, general SGBO commander of the The Hague Unit. “We even saw children standing in the front row.”

Vera (10) is one of those children who was present at the demonstration:

Climate demonstrator Vera (10) was reported to Veilig Thuis by the police

Potentially dangerous situation

The water cannon was therefore temporarily not used. “In short, we as the police believe that people have put their children in a potentially dangerous situation by taking them to an illegal protest,” said Dijkstra.

In an additional response to the NOS, the police stated that it had already been decided before the action to call in Safe at Home if there were minors at the protest. “We have a duty of care towards young children who are there,” says a spokesperson, who points out that it was also very hot on Saturday.

‘Careful consideration’

The Hague police announced yesterday that reporting to Veilig Thuis is standard procedure “for arrests in which children are in danger”. This also happened during previous Extinction Rebellion demonstrations against fossil subsidies.

When reporting, the police distinguish between minors under and over 12. Children under 12 who have been arrested or placed in a dangerous situation are always reported. For minors over 12, “it is up to the officer to determine whether the situation gives reason to do so,” the police write.

Children were also present at previous farmers’ protests on highways, but as far as the police can now determine, this was not reported at the time. The difference, according to the spokesperson, is that no large-scale arrests were made on the highway itself during the farmer protests, as is happening now.

“When we had arrested farmers there and there were children among them, we would have also reported it to Veilig Thuis according to protocol.”

  • Safe at Home ‘displeased’ about police reports about children of A12 activists
  • 2,400 demonstrators, including dozens of minors, arrested at the A12 blockade
  • Domestic

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