Minister to meet police unions to discuss wedding social distancing gaffe

'Inhumane' approach to get the boot Credit: Alex Nicholls-Lee

Justice minister Ferd Grapperhaus is to meet police and street warden representatives to discuss the controversy surrounding his wedding, at which social distancing laws were broken.

Street warden union NBB told broadcaster NOS on Monday that its members are handing out fewer fines for breaking the 1.5 metres rule since wedding photographs circulated showing Grapperhuis, junior justice minister Ankie Broekers-Knol and other guests posing as a group on the steps of Bloemendaal town hall.

‘People are less understanding about the fines,’ NBB chairman Richard Gerrits said. ‘And street wardens are noticing it. It is tricky to explain to people why they can get a fine but the minister responsible [for law and order] does not keep the rules himself.’

Grapperhaus told reporters after Monday’s meeting of the 25 regional safety boards that he has some explaining to do. ‘I have invited the police and wardens’ unions for a meeting,’ he said.

The minister has paid €780 to the Red Cross as a de facto punishment for breaking the rules during his wedding last month. The total is twice the amount he would have had to pay in fines.

Prime minister Mark Rutte told reporters on Friday that Grapperhaus’ credibility had not been damaged by the incident.

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