SHARE
COPY LINK

HOMOPHOBIA

From insults to violence: How homophobic attacks have jumped in France

Assaults in France on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people hit a new record in 2018, "a dark year" for the LGBT community, French group SOS Homophobie reported Tuesday.

From insults to violence: How homophobic attacks have jumped in France
Photo: AFP
The non-profit association registered 231 physical attacks, up from the previous annual record of 188 anti-LGBT assaults back in 2013 which was when the same-sex marriage legislation was passed in France. 
   
“2018 was a dark year for LGBT people,” said SOS Homophobie co-presidents Véronique Godet and Joël Deumier in the yearly report.
   
The number of assaults jumped 66 percent over 2017, with a spike towards the end of the year when a case a day was being reported to the group.
 
“Homophobia is more and more violent and is manifested by physical aggression,” said Deumier.
 
A total of 35 percent of the attacks took place in public places. 
 
“It is still difficult when you are a member of the LGBT community to demonstrate affection, to hold the hand of your partner freely,” said Deumier. 
 
SOS Homophobie's helpline, website and legal services collected 1,905 statements from witnesses of abuse of the gay community, 15 percent more than the previous year.

The breakdown of cases, which could involve multiple categories, showed 62 percent involved rejection, 51 percent insults, 38 percent discrimination and 20 percent harassment. Threats and defamation made up 17 percent each with physical assault on 13 percent.

Some 66 percent of witnesses were men, who were “more inclined to talk about it and turn to SOS Homophobie to denounce what they suffered”.
 
The association said the 42 percent leap in reporting of violence against lesbians appeared linked to the greater willingness of victims to speak out and the influence of the #MeToo movement.
   
With 23 percent of reported cases, the internet was the leading place for the expression of LGBT phobia in France.
   
Facebook and Twitter act like an “echo chamber” of daily cases with the social networks recording more than half of all reported cases, the group said.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

LIVING IN FRANCE

France to roll out ID cards app

Technology is being rolled out to allow people to carry their French ID cards in an app form - and could be rolled out to other cards, including driving licences and cartes de séjour residency cards.

France to roll out ID cards app

Holders of French carte d’identité (ID cards) will soon be able to carry certified digital versions of them on their smartphone or other electronic devices, a decree published in the Journal Officiel has confirmed.

An official app is being developed for holders of the newer credit card-format ID cards that have information stored on a chip. A provisional test version of the app is expected at the end of May.

Users will be able to use the ID card app, when it becomes available, for a range of services “from checking in at the airport to renting a car”, according to Thierry Breton, EU Commissioner for the Internal Market.

All French citizens have an ID card, which can be used for proving identity in a range of circumstances and for travel within the EU and Schengen zone – the new app will be in addition to the plastic card that holders already have.

Under the plans, after downloading the app, card holders will need merely to hold the card close to their phone to transfer the required information. According to officials, the holder then can decide what information is passed on – such as proof of age, or home address – according to the situation.

The government has not given any examples of situations in which the app would need to be used, but has set out the main principles and the ambition of the plan: to allow everyone to identify themselves and connect to certain public and private organisations, in particular those linked to the France Connect portal.

READ ALSO What is France Connect and how could it make your life simpler?

Cards will continue to be issued for the foreseeable future – this is merely an extension of the existing system.

Only French citizens have ID cards, but if successful the app is expected to be rolled out to include other cards, such as driving licences, cartes de séjour residency cards or even visas. A digital wallet is being developed at the European level – Member States have until September to agree what it could contain.

READ ALSO Eight smartphone apps that make life in France a bit easier

SHOW COMMENTS