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NCJ Number: 62837 Find in a Library
Title: POLICING THE INNER CITY - A STUDY OF AMSTERDAM'S WARMOESSTRAAT - NETHERLANDS
Author(s): M PUNCH
Corporate Author: Macmillan Press Ltd
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 242
Sponsoring Agency: Macmillan Press Ltd
London, England
Shoe String Press
Hamden, CT 06514
Sale Source: Shoe String Press
995 Sherman Avenue
Hamden, CT 06514
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: FOR POLICEMEN, ACADEMICS, AND POLICYMAKERS CONCERNED WITH THE QUALITY OF ORDER IN THE INNER CITY, THIS REPORT ILLUMINATES POLICE WORK AND STREET LIFE IN THE RED-LIGHT DISTRICT OF AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND.
Abstract: THIS PARTICIPANT OBSERVATION STUDY OF UNIFORMED POLICE WORK WAS CARRIED OUT AT THE BUREAU WARMOESSTRAAT, A POLICE STATION IN THE HEART OF AMSTERDAM'S HIGH CRIME DISTRICT. THE BRITISH AUTHOR ESTABLISHED A RAPPORT WITH POLICEMEN BY ADOPTING THEIR WORK SCHEDULES, LISTENING TO THEIR CONVERSATIONS, INTERVIEWING POLICEMEN OF ALL RANKS FROM COMMISSIONER TO CONSTABLE, AND REVIEWING THE LITERATURE AT THE STATION. COVERING A 6-MONTH PERIOD, THE FIELD STUDY FOCUSED ON THE COMPLEX FACTORS (I.E., HARD DRUGS, INTERNATIONAL YOUTH TOURISM, OPEN BORDERS, IMMIGRATION, AND PREDATORY CRIME) WHICH DILUTE THE POLICE CULTURE, CREATE AN ALMOST NORMLESS QUALITY ABOUT POLICE WORK, ADD TO THE DECLINE OF THE POLICE CRAFT, AND LEAD TO INEFFECTIVE LAW ENFORCEMENT AND REPRESSIVE NORMS OF POLICING. FINDINGS SHOWED THAT IN AMSTERDAM, YOUNG, INEXPERIENCED PATROLMEN FACE URBAN DECAY AND AN OFTEN ANONYMOUS PUBLIC; THEY POLICE PEOPLE WHO ARE STRANGERS TO THEM, MANY OF THEM FOREIGNERS, A SITUATION WHICH ACCENTUATES THE ISOLATION OF COMTEMPORARY POLICING. ANECDOTES FROM POLICE OF WARMOESSTRAAT STATION, STREET ENCOUNTERS, CRIME AND DRUGS, AND RACE RELATIONS ILLUSTRATED THE PREDICAMENTS FACING POLICE IN THE INNER CITY. OVERALL, AMSTERDAM POLICE BEHAVED BETTER THAN THEIR COUNTERPARTS IN AMERICA AND ENGLAND, WITH FEW SIGNS OF SADISTIC VIOLENCE, CORRUPTION, OR RACIAL PREJUDICE. INNER CITIES CAN BE VIEWED AS TESTING GROUNDS FOR THE CONSEQUENCES OF SOCIAL CHANGE IN THAT THEY OFTEN CONTAIN ELEMENTS OF ETHNIC AND CULTURAL DIVERSITY, OF TOLERANCE FOR DISPLAYS OF DEVIANCY, AND OF CERTAIN DELETERIOUS BYPRODUCTS OF SOCIOECONOMIC CHANGE. THE CENTRAL PROBLEM FOR POLICE IN SUCH A SOCIETY BECOMES HOW TO COPE WITH RISING CRIME WHEN THERE IS AN INCREASING LEVEL OF TOLERANCE FOR UNORTHODOX BEHAVIOR AND A HEIGHTENED CONSCIOUSNESS OF INDIVIDUAL GROUP RIGHTS. NUMEROUS SOCIOLOGICAL STUDIES OF POLICE WORK ARE CITED; AN APPENDIX CONTAINS A DESCRIPTION OF THE DUTCH POLICE STRUCTURE. AN INDEX AND BIBLIOGRAPHY ARE ALSO INCLUDED. (WJR)
Index Term(s): Drug law enforcement; Municipal police; Netherlands; Police attitudes; Police community relations; Prostitution; Race relations; Role perception; Street crimes; Urban area studies
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=62837

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