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2. Security.

The role of the police is essential to counter theft, vandalism and neighborhood problems.

We have a professional and effective police force implementing a zonal security plan. This is regularly updated based on a strategic analysis of the region, a 4-yearly population survey and federal guidelines.

It is generally recognised that "our" police does an excellent job in breaking up gangs of thieves. However, the danger comes from outside our community and, hence, RESPECT wants to take drastic action:

  • More patrols
    The police was recently expanded by 20%. There are currently 6 district inspectors for 18 000 inhabitants -- that is 1 for every 3000 inhabitants. This may be better than the legal minimum of 1 for 4000 inhabitants, but criminal gangs migrate from the better protected areas in Brussels to less protected areas such as here in Rode. Often, only one patrol is on the road and that is enough.

  • Deal with the gangs and vandalism around the station
    At the request of the NMBS Railway Company, the police worked out an action plan, but it was not followed up, for unknown reasons. RESPECT will revisit this problem and propose for instance installing cameras.

  • Information of the population
    Did you know that, since several months, you can phone directly to your own community police officer? If he or she is not immediately accessible, you can leave a message and the police officer will call you back as soon as possible. The current majority in the municipal council does not find fit to share any useful information or telephone numbers through its community newspaper and website.

    Did you know that the police, although willing to publicize its work on burglary, drug and alcohol prevention, is not allowed to do this by the current majority.

  • The chaos at the school gate
    Almost daily there is a police presence at the school gate when school time begins and ends. Ideally, there should be two policemen, but, this doubling would be at the expense of the "Police Time" needed for instance for a second patrol at night or in the week-end. RESPECT therefore proposes that, like in Drogenbos, the school gate should be patrolled by Community Stewards (Stadswachters).

  • Traffic chaos in the narrow streets
    Complaints and suggestions from residents are just passed on by the mayor to the police. There is no working group on traffic, as in other municipalities. There is no follow up on the mobility studies that were carried out. In such circumstances, the police cannot solve the problems.

    RESPECT proposes a road safety group to address substantively the growing traffic issues.

  • Cleanliness and minor offenses
    The district inspector first gives a warning, allowing some time to take steps such as for de-icing pavements, trimming nuisance hedges, clearing dog excrement ... Only after a warning will a GAS (Municipal Administrative Sanction) be sent to the municipal authorities for follow-up. But this is rarely done.