New Support Centres for victims of sexual violence should be created in Belgium so that each province is equipped, Federal Minister in charge of Equal Opportunities Nathalie Muylle announced on Het Laatste Nieuws on Thursday.
Belgium currently has three such centres in Brussels, Ghent and Liège. Victims of sexual assault can receive medical and psycho-social support, as well as appropriate guidance, should a complaint process be initiated.
Since October 2017 these centres have helped as many as 2,244 persons — an average of three per day. “They offer an excellent service and victims should be eligible for such support across our country,” said Muylle (CD & V, Flemish Christian Democrats).
The latter has already received the support of Ecolo-Groen. The opposition group in the Chamber recalls that it had already been planned to open three new centres last year.
“As public and political authorities, we cannot decently encourage women to liberate their word and denounce the violence they suffer without putting in place this necessary mechanism,” said MP Zakia Khattabi (Ecolo).
She stressed that seven out of ten victims who went through a centre filed an official complaint, whereas only one in ten does so in general.
The Brussels Times