Prison officers strike at Leuven and Sint-Gillis jails

The strike by prison officers that started on Wednesday is continuing today at Leuven Central Prison in Flemish Brabant and Sint-Gillis Prison in Brussels. Prison officers are striking against plans to oblige them to provide a minimum service when taking strike action in the future.

On Saturday morning just 23.53% of the prison staff that were due to work at Leuven Central reported for duty. At Sint-Gillis this was a little over half (55.13%).

The unions that represent prison officers launched the wave of strike action in protest at the Justice Minister’s plans to introduce a legal obligation for prison officers to offer a minimum service while strike action is being taken.  

Numerous meeting to discuss the issue with the Justice Minister Koen Geens      (Flemish Christian democrat) have failed to resolve the dispute.

Mr Geens now intends to introduce the measure without the union’s consent.

On Saturday only the prisons in Leuven (with 23.53% of staff working) and Sint-Gillis (with 55.13% of staff working) were suffering any disruption. At Merksplas all but 4 prison officers were working on Saturday.