Being fat in France and particularly its capital Paris, where women are expected to be perfectly toned, is often an unpleasant experience.
Just ask author Gabrielle Deydier, who wrote a book on being a victim of “grossophobia” or sizeism and says she was told by disgusted passers-by to cover up on French beaches.
But Paris wants to tackle prejudice against overweight people and on Friday will hold its first “anti-grossophobia” day.
The event will see a series of round table discussions and other free events to address the real issue of “grossophobia” or “sizeism” in Paris, including a fashion show.
The aim is to make the French capital a leading city in the fight against discrimination, Helene Bidard who is in charge of gender equality and discrimination at City Hall told Buzzfeed.
“We have not found any public action in France on this issue. The fight against “grossophobia” is a big one in the fight against discrimination,” Bidard said.
The winner of Miss France Ronde 2014, Solange Marais (wearing tiara). Photo: Robert Muller
French writer Gabrielle Deydier author of a book on being obese in France will take part in the event, along with an American blogger Jess Baker who has also written two books on the subject called “Things no one will tell fat girls” and “Landwhale”.
“Grossophobia” which can be translated as sizeism (the French word for fat is gros) is characterised as discriminating on the grounds of a person's size.
This intolerance can be seen everywhere in France and is particularly damaging in the job market.
According to a study, it is estimated that an overweight woman would find it eight times more difficult to find a job than a woman who is seen as the “thin ideal”.
Activists, researchers and medical staff will also take part in the event.