Where can I report a suspected human rights violation in the Netherlands?
If you want to report a suspected human rights violation, there are various institutions and organisations you can go to. They each have different focuses and responsibilities.
Discuss the suspected violation with the responsible party
First, contact the individual or organisation that you believe is responsible for the human rights violation. Try to discuss the matter and find a solution. If you are dealing with an organisation, check whether it has a complaints committee.
Submitting a complaint
If your efforts to reach a solution are unsuccessful, you can contact one of the following organisations, depending on the exact nature of your complaint:
- The Netherlands Institute for Human Rights deals with complaints about discrimination in relation to schools, housing, shopping, employment, nightlife and entertainment, sports and more. Read more about submitting a complaint to the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights (in Dutch).
- The National Ombudsman deals with complaints about government bodies and in doing so monitors the government’s compliance with human rights.
- The Children’s Ombudsman deals with complaints related to children’s rights. These complaints may be about government bodies, healthcare organisations, voluntary youth care, childcare organisations or schools.
- The Data Protection Authority deals with questions and tips about personal data protection. It also deals with suspected violations of privacy legislation.
Taking your case to court
As a last resort you can decide to go to court. If you believe that your human rights have been violated, but the court in the Netherlands rules otherwise, you can lodge an application with the European Court of Human Rights.