What viewpoints have international human rights organizations adopted since 2000 on a number of aspects relating to the treatment of migrants in the Netherlands? How have politicians and the press responded to these viewpoints? And have any steps been taken as a result of international criticism? Three circumstances serve to illustrate the importance of these questions. Government policy on immigrants has undergone continuous change since 2002, and successive governments have been exploring limits ever since that year. One interesting question is how recent measures relate to international human rights treaties. A remarkable consensus among all political parties has been observed. For instance, politicians in (almost) all political parties supported the most important measures proclaimed between 2000 and 2008, in spite of their differences of opinion about modalities. However, treaties on human rights make it quite clear that resolutions passed by representative bodies, which enjoy wide support, must also fulfill certain minimum requirements, especially with respect to protecting minorities' rights. Dominique van Dam - the book's author - studied the effects of international monitoring of legislation and policy relating to migrants in the Netherlands. One of the facts that have emerged from her research is that it is not easy to view these effects separately from the impact of the behavior of actors, such as national and international human rights organizations, members of Parliament, advisory bodies, individual citizens, and specialized lawyers. The report concludes by making recommendations to the Dutch government, the Dutch House of Representatives, and the major players in the civil society.
Publication Date: 7/1/2010