France will now issue fines to men who wolf-whistle at women on the street

A fine of 750 euros will be issued on those who wolf-whistling or making sexual comments towards women in France after the last law passed in the country’s parliament. [1, 2]

Something similar had been done in Britain and it would not be surprising if adopted across Europe. The goal of the Macron Government is with this law women are not afraid to go on the streets, since sexual assaults against them have increased [4, 5]. These attacks have led several women to be forced to wear trousers rather than skirts to protect themselves.

The fine, however, is dramatically increased compared to the original proposals tabled a year ago when the issue began to be discussed, as the French government was talking about a fine of 90 euros.

The bill covers everything that “violates the free movement of women in public places and undermines self-esteem and the right to security.”

Excerpts include “comments, attitudes, or pressure of sexual or sexist nature that degrade, shame, threaten or are aggressive.”

In France, there has been much talk about attacks on women in public transport, which led many of them to be forced to wear trousers instead of skirts to protect themselves against aspirations.

‘It’s that moment when a man is walking behind a woman, talking to her, and the woman can do nothing, because she’s alone,’ French minister for gender equality Marlene Schiappa said last year.

‘She doesn’t scream for help, because she thinks, ‘It’s not that bad, I’ll walk, I’ll escape.’

‘Men feel it’s acceptable: they’re being ‘the French lover’… ‘It’s not a big deal, we’re only having fun.’ And we say, ‘No”.

Critics of the bill, however, argue that it will be a tombstone in ‘French love’, adding that its provisions will never be implemented in practice.