One in 10 Dutch people are racist: poll
6 June 2006
AMSTERDAM — One in 10 Dutch people are racist. They feel superior to immigrants and believe Dutch people should not mix with other nationalities, according to a new survey.
A quarter of the Dutch public is very negative about immigrants in general, consultancy Motivaction said at the weekend. It questioned 1020 people for the survey.
Ten percent of the respondents openly supported racist ideals, including the idea that Dutch people are more intelligent than immigrants.
Half of the people questioned expressed an aversion to Muslims and expressed fear about this group's influence on Dutch society. Some 43 percent said Islam is not for peace and almost two thirds said the religion is incompatible with modern society in Europe.
The majority of the respondents favoured a multicultural society, but 80 percent agreed cultural tension and racism have increased in recent years.
Director Ilhan Akel of the Dutch centre for foreigners (NCB) said the findings of the report were "very shocking" but he said he was not surprised by them.
"The hardening in society has been going on for five years. The current cabinet, particularly the policy of Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk, is also responsible for this," he said.
Verdonk declined to comment on the survey findings. A spokesperson said she is awaiting the publication of the more official report on racism in the Netherlands by the National Bureau against Racial Discrimination (LBR).