Right-wing activities and racism in the police force? This suspicion after a number of incidents outraged many employees. A broader study of the everyday life of police officers should nevertheless get to the bottom of the problems. But nothing will come of it in the southwest.
Stuttgart (dpa / lsw) - The police in Baden-Württemberg are breaking out and boycotting a nationwide study on the experiences and attitudes of police officers. After a veto by the main staff council, an online questionnaire from the German Police University was initially not distributed to the departments, although Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU) and Police President Stefanie Hinz had advertised participation.
Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann does not want to accept that. "We want this study to be done," said the Green politician on Tuesday in Stuttgart. He agreed with Strobl on that. It must be clarified whether the main staff council even has the option of blocking the participation of police employees in the study. "I can not imagine that."
President wants to stay in touch with staff councils
The police chief Hinz was rather defensive. So far, the state police headquarters only knows the negative vote of the main staff council, but not the reasons for this decision, said a spokeswoman for the Ministry of the Interior of the dpa. "With a view to this, the state police headquarters wants to stay in contact with the main staff council and see on the basis of whether Baden-Württemberg's participation, possibly later, is still possible."
However, the chairman of the main staff council is Ralf Kusterer, who is also the head of the German police union (DPolG). According to reports, like the federal chairman Rainer Wendt, he is strictly against participation in the survey.
Seehofer once responded to allegations of racism against the police
The study goes back to the former Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU), who responded to demands to investigate possible racism and legalism in the police force. However, the study was then laid out much more broadly. All interior ministers of the federal states support the research project on "Motivation, attitude and violence in everyday life" of police officers. The "Stuttgarter Zeitung" first reported on the rejection in the southwest. In almost all other federal states, the survey initiated by the federal government has already been completed - only in Hamburg has the main staff council also decided against it.
Police President: The study only makes sense if there is good participation
The Ministry of the Interior in Stuttgart explained that such a survey only makes sense if many people take part. That is why the main staff council was closely involved here as early as possible, also in order to promote acceptance and support for the study in Baden-Württemberg. Hinz also campaigned for the study because she hoped to gain insights into the workload, because then one could think more specifically about welfare measures. "It's not about a general suspicion that the colleagues should be placed under." Participation in the survey would have been voluntary for all civil servants.
The FDP interior expert Julia Goll sees the veto as a sign "that Strobl has completely lost the trust of the base". There is obviously great distrust of everything that comes from the ministry - "from our point of view, the content of the study would definitely be worth supporting, as it can help to counter blanket condemnations by the police".
Trade unionist Wendt complains about preconceived notions about the police
The trade unionist Wendt sees things differently. He thinks the no is completely understandable. Staff councils are not there to execute the will of politicians, Wendt told the dpa. In addition, there are serious doubts about the independence of the study by the German Police University in Münster. "The police are fed up with all these racism studies, which have no other purpose than to confirm the view that many already have that the police are a racist gang of thugs."
Doubts about the acceptance of the study due to the low response rate
Wendt said the fact that all states except Baden-Württemberg and Hamburg took part in the study says nothing about acceptance by the police. Because in many countries the main staff council was not asked for its approval. "But you should have asked everywhere." The low response rate to the questionnaires shows that acceptance is very low. According to Wendt's information, a good 20 percent took part nationwide, but in Bavaria, for example, the rate was only two to three percent. "Many police officers recognize the intention behind it."
Oliver Hildenbrand, Greens faction vice and interior expert, told the dpa: "The refusal attitude of the main staff council is irritating and incomprehensible." The Greens supported the ministry's efforts to convince the main staff council "that this is neither the right attitude nor the right way". The aim is to further strengthen the relationship of trust between the citizenry and the police.
The study is to be presented to the interior ministers at the end of November
When asked at the police college in Münster, they said they were surprised by the cancellation by the main staff council after six months. "We regret that we were not asked," said co-author Jochen Wittenberg of the dpa. The survey has been completed in almost all countries, in North Rhine-Westphalia and with the federal police it should end in July. Berlin will deliver a little later. Wittenberg assumes that the results will be presented at the next conference of interior ministers at the end of November. There is still a possibility that the police in the south-west are involved, the results would then be added later.