The Drachten business association is calling on shopkeepers to keep their eyes open now that emergency ordinance has been announced due to the threat of riots in the Frisian city
Translated by Adriana Dancu
The emergency decree has been issued following calls on social media to riot, and it is believed that young people have come to Drachten to cause problems.
Youth workers have actively taken to the streets, trying to convince the young people that the riots are of no use, and sharing videos of them online.
“I try to make it clear to them that they get a tick after their name if they are caught”, says youth worker Marien van Weert, “Then they will never again receive a VOG, a ‘certificate of good conduct’.”
David is a teenager from Drachten. He sees the posts online: “Yes, I see the online posts calling for riots.”
He himself does not understand why do people do this, he says: “Look, I can laugh when I see a police car being knocked over. But those nonsensical destruction of shops, man, don’t touch someone else’s property.”
There are other young people outside the youth center in Drachten that are not participating in the riots and stay at home each night. “Yes, listen to some music, play games. Watch Netflix,” says David. However, like David, they still miss hanging in the streets: “I like to go out in the evening, chill a bit. Now I do that in bed, in my room.”
‘Easily point to the youth’
David thinks that young people are viewed too negatively: “Only a few are rioting. The rest are at home, respecting the measures.”
Youth worker Marian van Weert also agrees: “It is easy to put the blame on the youth. Most young people are at home in the evening, they are not on the street.”
Because of the rioting, this situation is far from over: “Anyone who is rioting on the street right now doesn’t really help either. We all want to get rid of those damn measures, so hold back,” says David.
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