Minister intervenes at TB institution Oostvaarderskliniek after abuses

Minister Weerwind for Legal Protection is having an external investigation into the TB institution Oostvaarderskliniek in Almere, where several integrity violations have recently been reported. That‘s what he wrote in a letter to the House of Representatives.

Yesterday, it was announced that the general director of the Oostvaarderskliniek resigned from his position, the day after the dismissal of an employee who had forced a patient to engage in sexual acts. According to the clinic, this incident was not the reason for the departure. The minister now writes in the letter to Parliament that the director is resigning from his position โ€œfor personal reasonsโ€, without elaborating.

According to Weerwind, the Department of Judicial Establishments (DJI) is recruiting an interim director as soon as possible. He is instructed to โ€œmake the necessary changesโ€ in the clinic.

Serious integrity violations

Weerwind also explains in his letter that โ€œa number of very serious integrity violationsโ€ were reported to the clinic in a short period of time.

According to Weerwind, the possible sexual abuse mentioned above came to light in April during a conversation with the female TB couple. This was investigated by the DJI, after which the employee in question was fired on September 1. The Public Prosecutor’s Office has also launched a criminal investigation against the employee.

In September, a manager was also deactivated due to signals about cross-border behavior towards several employees. The DJI reported there to the Justice and Security Integrity Commission, which will decide on this next month.

Trainee had a relationship with TB couple

Two other incidents that Weerwind cites are the dismissal of an employee who had a sexual relationship with a TB employee and the cessation of an internship, also because of a relationship with a patient. Other signs of possible integrity violations are being investigated by DJI, according to the letter. โ€œWhere necessary, they are followed up.โ€

According to Weerwind, all reports of abuses have so far been addressed, but this is not sufficient due to the short period in which the large number of problems came to light. The DJI has asked the clinic to draw up a plan to achieve a safe living and working climate.

Part of this is the investigation by an external party that is currently being initiated. The Justice and Security Inspectorate will be involved in that investigation, will also monitor it and will review the final report.