More Than 700 Men Fined in the First Year of France’s “Cat-Call” Law

France has fined more than 700 men for harassing women in public since passing its so-called cat-calling law one year ago. The law was passed due to an incident last year where a woman was physically assaulted after she confronted a man for verbally harassing her on the street. There was a video of the confrontation and it went viral.

Gender Equality Minister Marlene Schiappa took lead on the legislation, announcing on Twitter the news of more than 700 men being fined and said, “It is no longer permissible and must no longer be tolerated to insult, to follow, to humiliate women by harassing them in the street, on transport or in public space!”

Feminist Anais Bourdet told the Thomas Reuter’s Foundation that this law is a dressing on a gaping wound. She went on to say that investment in education and prevention is best as this aggressive behavior is learned during the early school-age years. About 90% of the public in France supports this law.

The Realist Woman’s take:

While I agree with Miss Bourdet that teaching school-age boys how to treat girls as they will become men one day is the way to go on this issue, France’s government had to do something. This law needed to happen, and hopefully, men facing some kind of consequence for treating women so poorly will deter them from continuing on in this manner. Not only do men need to be fined, but they also need to be re-educated on how to treat women. Violence and harassment against women all over the world is no joke and it needs to be taken seriously.