Councils don’t think government is doing enough to help them integrate refugees


More than half of Dutch local authorities don’t think the government is doing enough to support their efforts to house and integrate refugees, according to research by broadcaster KRO-NCRV.

Almost 56% of local councils said the government’s support is inadequate, compared with 38% who say the government is doing a good job. In total, 262 of the country’s 390 local authority areas, including the big five cities, took part in the research.

In particular councils are unhappy about the level of funding provided to help refugees with residency permits integrate into the Netherlands. They argue that they don’t get enough cash to pay for interpreters, special educational provision and social workers.

Amsterdam, The Hague and Utrecht also want the government to give back responsibility for integration courses to the councils themselves. Since 2013, refugees have been responsible for making sure they pass the required integration exams and can borrow money to pay for classes from the student loan body DUO.

‘Now we have no idea what is going on in terms of integration,’ Utrecht city council said. ‘And that is hindering the integration of permit holders.’

Thank you for donating to

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation