World Europe 07 May 2017 France bans thin mod ...

France bans thin models from runways

AGENCIES | DECCAN CHRONICLE
Published May 7, 2017, 3:49 am IST
Updated May 7, 2017, 3:49 am IST
Proposals may have some impact on world due to Paris’ role in fashion industry.
France’s health minister said the new laws were aimed at preventing anorexia by stopping the promotion of inaccessible ideals of beauty.
 France’s health minister said the new laws were aimed at preventing anorexia by stopping the promotion of inaccessible ideals of beauty.

Models in France will have to prove that they are healthy if they wish to continue working in the country. Medical certificates proving that they are healthy will have to be provided. A new law was introduced banning those considered to be excessively thin.

In another drastic step which will come into force on October 1, magazines, adverts and websites will have to mark images in which a model’s appearance has been manipulated with the words photographie retouchée (retouched photograph). Doctors are urged to pay special attention to models’ body mass index, a calculation taking into account age, height and weight. However, unlike similar legislation passed in Italy and Spain, models will not have to reach a minimum BMI.

Under WHO guidelines an adult with a BMI below 18.5 is considered underweight, 18 malnourished, and 17 severely malnourished. The average model measuring 1.75m (5ft 9in) and weighing 50kg (7st 12lb) has a BMI of 16.

France’s health minister said the new laws were aimed at preventing anorexia by stopping the promotion of inaccessible ideals of beauty.

“Exposing young people to normative and unrealistic images of bodies leads to a sense of self-depreciation and poor self-esteem that can impact health-related behaviour,” health and social affairs minister Marisol Touraine said.

Given Paris’ leading role in the fashion industry, the measures — passed in 2015, but only just coming into effect — are likely to have a symbolic impact around the world.

The proposals had originally suggested a minimum BMI for models but, following an outcry from fashion executives and modelling agencies, this was ditched in favour of allowing doctors to decide whether a model is too thin.

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