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Brussels-North police to launch new street harassment campaign
Almost six months after the introduction of plainclothes patrols to combat street harassment, the Brussels-North police zone is organising training courses for its own staff and an awareness campaign for the general public.
In a press release, the police zone for Schaerbeek, Evere and Saint-Josse-ten-Noode said it "attaches great importance to the sense of security of everyone who moves in public spaces, as well as to the reception of victims of gender violence." The training courses for officers will begin from mid-September and brochures and posters about street harassment and consent have already been prepared.
For the training courses, the police will work together with the non-profit organisation Touche Pas à Ma Pote to further improve the way in which victims are received and taken care of.
Both the new brochures and the poster campaign put an emphasis on consent. "The difference between seduction and intimidation is consent," one slogan reads. The brochure details the steps that victims and witnesses can take, as well as the criminal consequences that the perpetrators face. It also aims to teach the potential perpetrators which behaviours are unacceptable and what impact misplaced actions have on a victim.
The Brussels-North police zone has designed a poster on the same theme. This refers to the Victim Treatment Service, where victims of street harassment can go for shelter and support. In addition, the poster encourages the victim to report the incident to the police or file a complaint. Each supervisory board will have its own poster displaying the number of their Victim Service.