The municipality is committed to providing faster and better debt assistance for residents in debt to the municipality. To this end, Alderman Bouke Velzen signed the NVVK 'Local Government' covenant on behalf of the municipality with the trade association for debt assistance and financial services in the Netherlands, the NVVK, on Jan. 31 at City Hall.

The Municipality of Zoetermeer offers assistance to residents who are experiencing money worries and financial problems in various ways. The aim is to prevent serious debts from arising. If residents do have problematic debts, the municipality tries to guide them towards a debt-free future. Alderman for debt assistance Bouke Velzen: "We want to assist our residents as best we can. For Zoetermeerders with debts, we want to ensure that the situation is quickly brought under control. This covenant helps municipalities do that and that is why we are joining. Debt peace is central to this and that makes debt assistance easier."

Debt peace is an important part of policy around debt, so that Zoetermeer residents have the peace of mind they need to find a solution to their financial problems. The signing of the Local Government Covenant helps with this and ensures that the municipality, in its role as creditor, quickly cooperates in debt settlements. From now on, the municipality will in principle always agree to an amicable settlement for its residents.

This means that if a resident has a debt with the municipality, it agrees to a proposed arrangement to support that resident. This includes the municipality temporarily stopping debt collection measures for residents seeking help with debt assistance. "As a creditor, we also set a good example by cooperating in debt settlements so that the resident quickly gets peace of mind and space in his head to solve his money problems," said Alderman Velzen. The peace of mind this gives the resident has a positive effect: it allows them to work more quickly on a solution with the debt relief worker and collection costs do not increase further.