Belgium: "a key voice"

The task of monitoring Belgian prisons and the main issues they face.

< image © CCSP

In 2019, Belgium’s Federal Parliament established the Central Prison Monitoring Council (Conseil Central de Surveillance Pénitentiaire, CCSP): an independent regulatory body formed to monitor penitentiary establishments in the country. The Council is chaired by Marc Nève, a specialist in criminal and prison law with 40 years’ legal experience. Over the course of his career, Nève has been actively involved in a number of associations concerning prisons and the rights of incarcerated individuals. His extensive judicial work has helped to ensure that the law is respected in prison. In 1999, Nève was named as the Belgian member of the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT); he served 12 years in this role, the maximum number of years for members.

With the help of his team and numerous volunteers, Marc Nève formed an independent regulatory body to examine issues within the Belgian prison system. Nève met with Prison Insider at the CCSP offices to share his thoughts and experiences as the first permanent president of the body. Interview.

The regular influx of new members into Monitoring Commissions shows that more people are gaining interest in the prison world.

[Haren mega-prison] is a mammoth-sized project, which currently costs more than 140 million euros a year.

There are not enough staff to handle current population levels, and prison infrastructure is deteriorating rapidly.