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France bans catcalling women in public places

August 03, 2018 06:26 AM


France bans catcalling women in public places

France voted to outlaw sexual harassment on the streets, leaving cat-callers and aggressively lecherous individuals facing potential on-the-spot fines of up to 750 euros as part of tougher legislation to fight sexual violence.

Lawmakers approved the law in a second reading late on Wednesday, days after outrage erupted in France after a man attacked a young woman, Marie Laguerre, when she responded to lewd noises he made at her outside a Paris cafe. “Harassment in the street has previously not been punished. From now on, it will be,” said Marlene Schiappa, gender equality minister and architect of the new legislation.

An early draft of the bill had said that minors under 15 would be assumed not to have given consent to sex with an older person.

Schiappa said France needed to stop tolerating sexual harassment and violence like the attack on Laguerre last week.

Laguerre, 22, was punched by a passer-by when she told him to “shut up” after he wolf-whistled at her. Laguerre has received praise from the French public and abroad for her courage in standing up to her aggressor

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