Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou

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Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou

Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou - © Deschuyffeleer
Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou - Commissaris Serge Roelens - Foto ingezonden
Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou - Foto ingezonden
Politiezone PAJOTTENLAND is host voor seminarie van Group Pompidou - © Deschuyffeleer

Tot en met vrijdag is de lokale politie Pajottenland host voor een seminarie van de Group Pompidou. Dit seminarie wordt opgebouwd rond de positie, de functie en de rol van de politie bij drugpreventie.

De Group Pompidou (Council of Europe International Cooperation Group on Drugs and Addictions) is het geesteskind van wijlen de voormalige Franse president Georges Pompidou. De Group is een denktank die werd opgericht in 1971 in een poging om de groeiende drugsproblemen in Europa en daarbuiten beter te begrijpen en aan te pakken. In 1980 werd de Group als intergouvernementeel orgaan opgenomen in het institutioneel kader van de Raad van Europa. De voorzitterschap wordt om de vier jaar aan één van de lidstaten toegewezen. Nog tot eind 2022 is dat Portugal.

Dit jaar wordt gekenmerkt door collectieve reflecties tussen de 41 lidstaten over de belangrijkste prioriteiten voor de volgende driejarige werkcyclus om de Group geschikt te maken voor het aanpakken van toekomstige druggerelateerde uitdagingen. De Group werkt hierbij concrete activiteiten en werkvormen uit. Die mikken vooral op het counteren van verslavend gedrag met betrekking tot legale stoffen zoals alcohol of tabak en nieuwe vormen van verslavingen zoals internetgokken en gamen.

Vandaag werd het startschot van dit seminarie gegeven in het hotel President in Brussel met een welkom van eerste commissaris Serge Roelens, directeur operaties en vertegenwoordiger van de politiezone. Voor zowel dag 1 als dag 3 is hotel President de plaats van afspraak. Morgen vinden de presentaties en het overleg plaats in de plattelandscentrum Paddenbroek in Gooik.   

Dat de lokale politiezone de host is voor dit seminarie is een nasleep van het winnen van een  Europese drugspreventieprijs vorig jaar op basis van het preventieproject SAMeN (Spreken, Aanpakken, Meten en Nadenken) van de preventiedienst Pajottenland.  Uit 53 projecten en 28 landen werd toen gekozen voor projecten uit België, Polen en Litouwen. Het zijn Bianca Vanreepinghen, preventiewerker gezondheid,  en Jonas De Maeseneer, voorzitter van het beheerscomité van de intergemeentelijke preventiedienst gezondheid, die in Parijs de erkenning mochten in ontvangst nemen. De winnaars ontvingen een trofee, een diploma en een prijzengeld ter waarde van 5000 euro.

Het werkcollege werd bijgewoond door delegaties van België, USA, Mexico, Tsjechië, Canada, Litouwen, Slovenië, Bosnië-Herzegovina, Turkije, IJsland, Roemenië en Marokko.

Hieronder het welkom van eerste commissaris Serge Roelens en het programma over de drie dagen.

“Good morning ladies and gentlemen, colleagues...

As Deputy Chief and Director of Operations in the police zone Pajottenland, I have been asked to welcome you to Belgium and tomorrow to Pajottenland, for the organization of your seminar of the group Pompidou on the role of the police in drug prevention.


Just to be clear, you are not yet in Pajottenland. So the best is yet to come.

It is actually because of a winning project on drug prevention in 2021 that we have now been asked to host this seminar. We have accepted this hospitality without any doubt.

Tomorrow you will receive a short explanation about this winning project, but unfortunately not by the laureate, prevention employee Bianca, who has been ill since last week and in the meantime getting better.


An equally important reason for wanting to be your host has to do with the fact that prevention in general - and therefore also drug prevention - plays an important role in the functioning of the local police Pajottenland.


To be clear, we are a small police force, with about 85 employees (73 police officers and 12 civilian employees) for six municipalities (I will mention them because you will undoubtedly have never heard of them: Bever, Galmaarden, Herne, Gooik , Lennik and Pepingen), with about 40,000 inhabitants.

Tomorrow we will be your host in Gooik.

In addition to our regular activities, such as intervention or emergency aid, traffic control, neighborhood police activities, victim treatment, local investigation, reception and public order enforcement, we pay a lot of attention to the project-based approach of our biggest security problems.

In the crime statistics of our district and even of Flanders, we are actually always at the bottom with regard to the committed offenses, which is a good thing in this case, and we want to keep it that way.

Nevertheless, in our Zonal Security Plan 2020-2025, we have retained four phenomena to be tackled as a matter of priority.

Cybercrime (it won't surprise you), illegal dumping and litter, alcohol and drugs in traffic and the drug problem in general.

The approach to these four phenomena to be tackled as a matter of priority, takes place on a project basis, what means with a plan of action in which clearly defined objectives to be achieved, and clear responsibilities for our police officers who are accountable for the realization.

Moreover, the approach is integral or complete, which means that we carry out prevention, repression and aftercare for each of these phenomena.

During your visit to the Pajottenland tomorrow, we will give you a short explanation about the drugs action plan, mainly regarding the preventive part.

So, although we are a small police force in a rural environment, we are also confronted with the "problems of the world" and we have to set up there. Certainly not an easy task, if you know that, like in most police forces around Brussels, we are currently confronted with an acute shortage of personnel.

The advantage of working in a rural force is that we are very close to the population and that, in my opinion, this makes preventive work easier.

Our people are well known by the population and vice-versa, which makes it easier to address them.

Enough about us now, back to the Group Pompidou.

It is not clear to me what your relationship is with the former president of France, but this will undoubtedly come. Or maybe there is no relationship at all?

Colleague Bart Vertessen has already told us a lot about the group, when he was warming us up to want to receive you.

That you are a think tank working on behalf of the Council of Europe and that you are expected to make proposals to that council on the role of the police in drug prevention.

That it is the intention that you look at what good practices there are in the different participating countries of the group and that you want to exchange experiences.

You have already done a lot of work during two previous seminars and are looking for answers to frequently asked questions.


You are particularly concerned with the role of the police in reducing drug use and the associated harm.

What can the police prevent during the execution of their task? What are the action areas and what are the expected effects of those actions?.

Do we work on all drug use, early use, drug use-related nuisance and drug use-related crime?

Should we only refer to other specialized services?

Who are the indispensable partners?

Which authorities can/should help us?

Do the police have the necessary powers, the necessary competences and the necessary resources to do this?

How can we use our available capacity and competences in the most efficient and effective way? Which target group should we mainly target?

And how do we build a culture of trust in our police to be able to do effective prevention?

We have the same questions. Therefore we look forward to the answers and proposals with great interest.

We see that you have a lot of discussion and exchange of ideas ahead of you in the next three days about the new approach to drug prevention by the police, which focuses on public health, about the impact of police prevention campaigns on the drug problem, about the necessary competences among police officers to do drug prevention, and that a lot of interesting speakers are expected.

And we also see that you have planned a social event, which you will also be looking forward to, but this is for tomorrow.

Good luck and we'll see you tomorrow.” S. ROELENS



Tuesday 10 May 2022, Moderation: Orsolya Gancsos, Pompidou Group Opening session

Welcome address by Pajottenland Local Police Serge Roelens, Commissioner of Pajottenland Local Police
Opening remarks by the Pompidou Group Thomas Kattau, Deputy Executive Secretary of the Pompidou Group
The prevention landscape in Belgium (Flanders) and the contribution of police Jochen Schrooten, Flemish Centre of Expertise on Alcohol and Other Drugs (VAD)

Session I – New approaches in drug prevention work by police
Introductory presentation: What role for police in contemporary prevention approaches Rik Prenen, Expert in drug use prevention and education, Belgium
Using ‘deflection’ in law enforcement to prevent risks and harms related to drug use while reducing crime and drugs Jac Charlier, Executive Director of Police, Treatment and Community Collaboration, United States
Experiences with a human-rights approach to policing
Tour de table: Experiences with new approaches in drug prevention work by police participants

Session II – Assessing utility and potential impact of police’ contribution to prevention programmes 14:00-17:10
Group exercises with the help of a coach planned on following aspects: (i) defining the impact of successful prevention programmes, (ii) successes and failures, (iii) discussing evidence base and assessing the effects of prevention programmes
Daily evaluation and closing of Day 1

Wednesday, 11 May 2022, Pajottenland

Session II – Study visit: Police support to youth-led projects on drug prevention at community level

Travel to Pajottenland by bus
Presentation of the S.A.M.e.N. multidisciplinary project, winner of the European Drug Prevention Prize 2021 Bianca Vanreephingen Project leader, Jonas De Maeseneer, Chairman of the Management Committee, Kris Poelaert, Chairman of the Police College
Discussion: reconnecting practice with theoretical approaches to drug prevention Facilitated by Rik Prenen, Expert in drug use prevention and education, Belgium
Guided visit of community premises and services involved in programme implementation

Session III – Assessing the contribution of police to drug prevention interventions

Feedback on evaluation of previous day and introduction of daily programme
Introduction and discussion: Evaluating the effects and impact of police prevention Thomas Kattau, Pompidou Group
Toolbox 1: Defining SMART objectives and outcomes for prevention Thomas Kattau, Pompidou Group

 Session IV – Core competencies for police officers involved in prevention work

Introduction and discussion: designing job descriptions and training for prevention officers
Toolbox 2: Identifying and engaging stakeholders
Guided group work outlining a concept for assessing the contribution of police to drug prevention interventions and developing a competency framework
Daily evaluation and closing of Day 2
Social event hosted by the Local Administration and Police of Pajottenland

Session V – Prevention of trauma and related substance use within police forces

Feedback on evaluation of previous day and introduction of daily programme
Introduction and discussion: prevalence and impact of trauma and addictive behaviours in police work
Toolbox 3: Assessing complementarity of different programmes contributing to prevention
Guided group work on outlining a concept for assessing the contribution of police to drug prevention interventions and developing a competency framework
Follow-up of the workshop: debriefing from the groups on proposed concepts
Closing and certificates
End of the Programm

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10 mei 2022
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