March 5, 2024

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Friday strike in all Belgian prisons: “Many detainees are lying on the floor in very small cells” |  local

Friday strike in all Belgian prisons: “Many detainees are lying on the floor in very small cells” | local

There is scheduled to be a strike in all Belgian prisons on Friday. This was announced by the socialist trade union ACOD. She added: “Many detainees are still lying on a mattress on the floor in a very small cell.”

Therefore, the declared strike will continue for 24 hours in Belgian prisons. It starts Thursday at 10pm and continues until Friday at 10pm. The willingness to strike is said to be high.

Unions point to the sharp increase in the number of detainees and detainees, but also to the growing number of assault cases. The total number of Belgian prison inmates is close to 12,000 people, about 1,400 more than the permitted capacity.

“Solutions are not enough”

As for unions, the solutions proposed by the government “are still insufficient after two years.” As a result, staff are forced to work in “unacceptable conditions” and detainees live in “appalling living conditions.”

“The strike mainly falls on January 12, because this month we also have to take in the 12,000th detainee,” says Eddy De Smet of VSOA. “Overcrowding causes prisons to become overcrowded, creating inhumane living conditions for our detainees.”

“The willingness to strike is very high,” stresses De Smet. “It is urgent that we make the job more attractive for staff to be recruited more easily in our organisations, because staff shortages also remain a problem. This shortage means that the leave backlog is constantly growing as well, resulting in a current backlog of up to 600,000 days,” De Smet said. “There is no longer any question about inhumane detention.”

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