No place for burkinis in Grenoble’s public pools: France’s top court


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Grenoble’s city council had voted in favour of allowing the use of burkinis on May 16, sparking howls of protest from conservative and far-right politicians.

Grenoble is not the first French city to change its rules.
Grenoble is not the first French city to change its rules.
(AFP)

Full-body swimwear including the burkini should not be worn in public pools in the city of
Grenoble, France’s top administrative court has ruled,
upholding an earlier order by a lower court.

“The new rules of procedure for the municipal swimming pools
of Grenoble affect (…) the proper functioning of the public
service, and undermines the equal treatment of users, so that
the neutrality public service is compromised,” the Conseil
d’Etat said in a statement on Tuesday.

Body-covering swimwear – which leaves only the face, hands and feet exposed – is often worn by Muslim women who wish to preserve their modesty in accordance with their beliefs.

Grenoble’s city council had voted in favour of allowing the use of burkinis on May 16, sparking howls of protest from conservative and far-right politicians.

READ MORE: Why is the French city of Grenoble debating a burkini ban?

‘Definitely overruled’

The city’s move was challenged by the government and a lower
administrative court suspended the measure.

Grenoble responded
by taking its legal fight to the Conseil d’Etat.

After the Conseil d’Etat’s ruling, Interior Minister Gerald
Darmanin said Grenoble’s act had been “definitively overruled”.

“A victory for our “separatism” law, for secularism and
above all for the Republic,” Darmanin said.

Attempts by several local mayors in the south of France to ban the burkini on Mediterranean beaches in the summer of 2016 kicked off the first firestorm around the bathing suit.

The restrictions were eventually overturned for being discriminatory.

Grenoble is not the first French city to change its rules.

The northwestern city of Rennes quietly updated its pool code in 2019 to allow burkinis and other types of swimwear.

READ MORE:
Fresh burkini debate reveals France’s toxic post-election climate

Source: TRTWorld and agencies


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