Rotterdam to equip its street wardens with bodycams after experiment

Street wardens on duty. Photo:
Street wardens on duty. Photo:

Rotterdam is to equip all its 400 street wardens with bodycams at a cost of €250,000, city officials have decided.

Street wardens – civil servants who known as boas in Dutch – carry out a range of supervisory tasks and have the power to issue fines and make arrests. They have been campaigning to be given more equipment, such as pepper spray and truncheons, to cope with violent incidents.

Last year the city began an experiment giving 50 wardens a mini camera to find out if it improved their safety and helped prevent incidents.

Rotterdam alderman Bert Wijbenga said the experiment had led to people being less aggressive because they knew they were being filmed. ‘And the wardens know they are being filmed, and take that into account as well,’ Wijbenga said.

Amsterdam is running a similar experiment involving 100 wardens.

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