Expatica news

Youth workers cleared over baby’s death

13 February 2006

BRUSSELS — Three youth workers with Flemish family services have been cleared by Brugge Court of any wrongdoing over the death of a neglected baby.

However, the mother of the baby was given a 12-month suspended jail term, newspaper ‘De Standaard’ reported on Monday.

An 18-month-old baby died in Bredene in December 2001 from malnutrition.

The child had been previously admitted to hospital, at which point doctors had criticised social workers because there were definite indications of malnutrition.

The family services units Comité Bijzondere Jeugdzorg (Exceptional Youth Care Committe) and Kind & Gezin (Child & Family) jointly drew up a supervision plan.

The plan initially met with success, until the mother took the child to hospital on 7 December 2001.

However, the baby had died before it arrived at the hospital. The cause of death was hunger and dehydration.

The mother was accused of unintentionally withholding food from the baby.

The public prosecution office said it saw no evidence that the woman had deliberately withheld food from the child.

The father was not accused of any crime. He works on a drilling platform and was not home often enough to be held accountable for the baby’s death, the prosecution said.

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Belgian news