Expatica news

Demands for hospital stewards

25 July 2007

BRUSSELS – Belgian hospitals are demanding more stewards.

The demand for security personel in Belgian hospitals is on the increase, according to figures released by the federal police.

The number of criminal offences dropped last year by 10 percent to 4,500, the lowest number in 5 years. In the battle against crime, many hospitals now want to deploy stewards.

Almost half the offences (46%) took place in Flemish hospitals. In Wallonia and Brussels the figures were 37% and 17% respectively. The police were most often called in cases of theft (3,729). Vandalism(260), and cases of bodily harm (270) made up a high proportion of the total.

In the battle against crime, outgoing Minister of Health Rudy Demotte (PS) and the minister for Internal Affairs Patrick Dewael (OpenVLD) are making 504 hospital stewards available.

These are people under 30 with a lower education and will require training. A steward must be a focal point for patients, personnel and visitors on security issues, and take stock of crime in the hospital.

When the question was put to Internal Affairs, they admitted that there is a large demand for stewards. In the course of one month more than 20 requests were received. Hospitals must apply for a permit to set up an internal security system.

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news