Saniye Çelik in ScienceGuide on discrimination and inclusiveness in the Dutch police force
Saniye Çelik, senior programme manager at the Centre for Professional Learning (CPL), has been invited by the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Justice and Security to share her expertise with the Dutch House of Representatives (Tweede Kamer) in the field of discrimination and inclusiveness in the Dutch police force. According to her the problems surrounding inclusiveness and diversity are extensive.
Çelik acknowledges that it is not always easy to discuss diversity but that is seems that changes are slow to appear. Police personnel also believes that the desired and promised change in culture is not being implemented at a sufficient pace. The result is that very little changes in the field of diversity. Çelik states that people with a non-Western migration background are leaving the police force because of it: 'we can't ignore it. The police force has a serious problem, it's no longer about a few incidents. Half of the police employees that consider themselves ethnically diverse experience discrimination. People with a non-Dutch background more often leave the organisation than their colleagues with typically Dutch roots.'
In order to solve the diversity problem it is important to bring in expertise from outside: 'It's essential to combine expertise from outside and inside the organisation to solve the issue that we're discussing today. The police itself is part of the problem and that makes it difficult to become part of the solution without the help of others,' according to Çelik. Çelik also believes that the police organisation should be a reflection of society and that measures need be taking when it comes the level of education: 'If we, as the police, want to be a reflection of society changes will need to be made. Society in general has a higher level of education than we have here at the police. Shouldn't the people working at the police be equally smart as the society in which we serve?'
Diversity has become a hot topic on the agenda of public organisations. They are eager to promote diversity and inclusiveness, but when it comes to the daily, however, it appears to be easier said than done. How do you prepare people for the changes in society? How do you nurture an inclusive culture within an organisation? And how do you maintain it?
If you would like more learn more about this topic: you can to register for the course on Diversity and Inclusiveness on 5 March.