Dutch police officers express huge interest in St. Maarten

POSTED: 07/27/11 1:30 PM

St. Maarten – A joint committee of the management team of the Police Force of St. Maarten and the police union will travel to the Netherlands at the end of August to select 20 Dutch officers for a three year posting in St. Maarten. The campaign to recruit officers began earlier this month and has received overwhelming interest. The interest was so great the police management here asked the committee at the twinning partner of South Holland South to stop taking applications when the requests hit 500.
“We had to stop taking applications because then we would have too applications to consider,” Commissioner Carl John said.
The applications are now being vetted and the committee in the Netherlands will create a short list. That group will then be interviewed by the committee from St. Maarten for 15 positions in the uniformed service and five to work as detectives.
Hiring the 20 officers is part of the Plan of Approach for the police, which states that the 20 officers will be recruited for three years while the Government of St. Maarten recruits people to move the police for from 189 officers to 389 by 2017.
The strong interest seems not to have been impeded by a caution from Klaas Groen of the South Holland South Police Force. He’s written that crime on the island is high.
“There are many murders and armed robberies per month for an island with a population of 30, 000,” Groen wrote on his blog.
In reply John said, “It will be very difficult for us to change the perception that crime is high without help from the community.”

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