Hospital crime rate soars by 25pc
25 October 2005
BRUSSELS — Crime in Belgian hospitals has risen by 25 percent in the past five years, Interior Minister Patrick Dewael has said.
Police recorded 4,967 crimes in 2004, 23 percent more than in 2000, newspaper ‘Het Gazet van Antwerpen’ reported on Tuesday.
Theft and crimes of extortion were the most common, with 4,403 incidents recorded or 24 percent more than in 2000.
Violent crimes such as assault, rape and sexual misconduct increased by 9.5 percent to 408 incidents last year. Vandalism increased by 44 percent, with 156 such crimes recorded in 2004.
It is suspected that every Belgian hospital is affected by crime and together with Health Minister Rudy Demotte, Minister Dewael is to launch an awareness campaign.
Brochures and posters will be distributed to the nation’s hospitals to inform patients and staff about the crime problems.
A handbook aimed at preventing crimes in hospitals will also be handed out.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Belgian news