The State Secretary for Equal Opportunities, Elke Sleurs, has announced a new centre for victims of sexual violence will open its doors soon. She made the announcement on the TV program De Zevende sur”éen”. These structures work with a hospital and different (para-)medical, psychologic, police and judicial services.
Every day, ten women report sexual violence in Belgium. But the number of victims could be ten times higher. Multidisciplinary centres also simplify the procedures for victims, making it easier for them to report their attack. This is the conclusion drawn from similar structures put in place in the Netherlands and Great Britain.
The goal is to avoid the victim having to repeat their story at each hearing. “The initiative is based on how they are dealt with: how to interact with victims of sexual violence”, the State Secretary explains. Feasibility studies are currently underway, and they will deliver their conclusions next August. Three centres will be opened as part of a pilot project.