Women expelled from streets in central Paris, police unable to restore safety
Paris : Les femmes chassées des rues dans le quartier Chapelle-Pajol https://t.co/Yz64kji7Zg
— Bakounine (@Kropotkine2910) 19 mei 2017
Update 21 May, 20:00: Watch as women protesting their street harassment are being called “racist manipulators” by counter-activists.
Women from the Chapelle-Pajol district (not the banlieue, but right in the centre of Paris, close to Gare Du Nord, the Sacré-Coeur, Montmartre and the Moulin Rouge) are no longer visible on its streets and squares, they are absent from its metro stations, and they are no longer welcome in its cafes, bars and restaurants. The district is taken over by groups of men, drug dealers and migrants, who harass or insult every female they encounter.
Newspaper Le Parisien reported this week on the structural misogyny inside the French capital.
Three women were interviewed by Le Parisien.
Nathalie (50) states:
“We are treated unbearably (…) there are insults and the atmosphere is agonising to the point that we are forced to change our clothes. A while ago I would go out on the streets at night, these days, such a thing is unthinkable.”
Aurélie (38), admits she no longer recognises the district where she lived for 15 years:
“The simple freedoms of moving around has become problematic. The cafe downstairs, a bistro once friendly, has turned into an exclusively male den and is constantly crowded. They drink a lot, so I continuously receive insults when I pass by. I, therefore, lock myself in my apartment.”
Laure now completely avoids the Chapelle metro station:
“Recently, I was caught in the middle of a brawl of dealers. I screamed, and two of them took out knives to threaten me. I thought my last hour had struck. Also, it’s been months since my 12-year-old daughter went to school alone, nor anywhere else in the neighbourhood, actually.”
The women of La Chapelle know that filing a complaint has little effect. And although the police are aware of the situation and have made 884(!) arrests since January, they still do not patrol the district permanently. Therefore the women of the district are ‘sounding the alarm’, and have launched a petition to move the mayor and the police to act accordingly.