SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Local authorities that only accept bank card payments for items such as passports and driving licences have been warned they are breaching European rules on accessibility.
The European Central Bank has written to the Dutch central bank and the Association of Dutch Municipalities (VNG) to tell them they must offer citizens the option of paying in cash.
While measures to encourage payment by card are acceptable, refusing to accept cash excludes people, such as the elderly, who are unable to or prefer not to pay electronically, and breaches European law.
In a statement, the VNG said: ‘Residents who cannot or choose not to pay by PIN must be able to pay cash. It is up to municipalities themselves to decide how to implement their payment policy.’ (DutchNews)