The City of Amsterdam is tackling this issue in close cooperation with the Public Prosecution Service (Openbaar Ministerie), the police, the Public Health Service of Amsterdam (GGD), local hospitals, the advisory body Adviesbureau Drugs, Ambulance Amsterdam and the narcotics research and information centre Jellinek.

In addition, the initiative is reaching out to various Amsterdam-based businesses such as coffeeshops, smartshops, hotels, hostels, cafés, bars and restaurants. They have been asked to issue warnings to their customers by clearly displaying posters and distributing leaflets. The campaign is targeted to communicate with young tourists, as they are most at risk of falling victim to the so-called ‘white heroine’.

Warning the public

This campaign will be expanded further during the upcoming weekend. Additional public information displays showing the ‘drugs alert’ warning will be used at locations popular with tourists. In addition, more leaflets will be distributed, both on the streets and in cafés, bars and clubs.

The police are making a considerable effort to find the perpetrator, who is suspected to be a street dealer. They have not ruled out the possibility that the dealer in question is unaware of the fact that he or she is selling white heroine instead of cocaine. Until now, the dealer has primarily been active in the city centre.

Further information and an appeal for witnesses

The cooperating parties appeal to anyone who has specific information or simply witnessed anything suspicious to urgently contact the police. It is also possible to make an anonymous report.

Essential contact numbers include:

  • Emergency police, fire brigade, ambulance: 112
  • Police information: 0900 8844
  • Anonymous tip-line: 0800 7000

In addition, the City of Amsterdam would like to stress that in the Netherlands, anyone who experiences discomfort, difficulties or pain following any drug use can always seek medical assistance without risking prosecution.

Further information can be found at the Public Health Service of Amsterdam’s dedicated website www.drugsalert.nl.

Press release, City of Amsterdam, 28 November 2014 

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