Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten will submit a bill to parliament later this week which, if passed, would enable judges to impose a two-year area ban on people causing serious problems in their districts.
The previous cabinet had already begun investigating the possibility of banning known troublemakers from their districts in cases of agression, violence or other forms of criminal or anti-social behaviour. At present, area bans can only be imposed as one of the conditions of a conditional jail sentence.
The Dutch city of Gouda was recently in the news due to recurring problems with co-called Moroccan 'street-terrorists'. Last week Moroccan youth, some younger than 12, pelted residents with eggs and flower bulbs.
Mayor Wim Cornelis (Dutch Labour Party), told newspaper Algemeen Dagblad that Opstelten's proposal doesn't go far enough. He wants to evict about 20 problem families, almost all of which are Moroccan. Cornelis says that the problematic families often refuse to work on improving their children's behavior, and deny that there are problems.
Cornelis intends to speak about the issue with other municipalities and 'exchange' problem-families with other cities, hoping that taking them out of their environment and with intensive help they would build a better life.
The mayor says he can't solve the problems with which Gouda has been dealing for years. "Should we maybe execute youth? Cut off hands? We do everything possible".
Cornelis says he's not the only one with such problems. "The mayor of Ede called me recently. He said: I'm happy that we don't get so much media attention. Every evening a car is set aflame here, but nobody calls."
Cornelis says the media are jumping on Gouda. "Logically, we are an icon in the Netherlands. And naturally, we have a problem. But look how that happens. Relatively most of the Moroccans live here, and many of them are youth."
Sources: AD, Telegraaf (Dutch)
See also: Gouda: Moroccan parents, mosques unable to deal with problem youth
Update: fixed headline