Only half of the country trusts the government and parliament, according to a new study by the Dutch Institute for Social Research.
SCP, the government agency that conducts social research, released a survey on Thursday that showed Dutch residents have a rather pessimistic outlook on how the government works.
According to the report, which surveys about 400 people monthly from November to February, 49% of Dutch people believe the country is on the wrong track. Only 50% trust the government and 51% trust Congress.
“Dutch people particularly value free elections and freedom of expression. Yet most believe there is room for improvement,” the report said. A majority of the population, 70%, say they trust Dutch democracy.
According to SCP researcher Josje den Ridder, there was a time in the last 15 years when numbers were this low. Confidence in government collapsed during the 2008 financial crisis and the austerity measures that followed the 2015 immigration crisis.
Den Ridder told the NRC that the decline was more than just a reaction to politics, and that other factors were at play. .’
The report also shows that trust in government is polarized. About 80% of supporters of the four coalition parties have a favorable view of politics, while supporters of the right-wing opposition parties remain at 20%.
“What I’m starting to feel is that people are skeptical. Is everything as organized as we think it is in Holland?” Den Ridder said.
This concern seems to predate the current inflation and overcrowding in Ter Apel.
Distrust in politics was first seen during the coronavirus, when governments fell behind in vaccinations. He also mentions Groningen’s response to the gas crisis and child care benefit scandal. “It seems that the government doesn’t think they can help when they’re in trouble,” he says.
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