By Anita Senior
New French laws could see owners of modelling agencies jailed if they’re found to be representing models who are too thin, and internet sites banned.
MPs in France have created a law which bans models who are deemed to be grossly underweight from working in the industry.
The laws state that any models who wish to work must be of a healthy BMI (body mass index). This is usually between 18.5 and 24.9 on the BMI scale. Rules will be so strict that modelling agents who are found non-compliant could be faced with jail time of up to 6 months.
There will also be a clamp down on internet sites which promote and condone eating disorders such as anorexia. Any images which have been digitally altered with photoshop or other software will also have to be clearly labelled to make consumers aware.
The bill was proposed by Socialist MP Olivier Veran. He assured the senate that there would be regular checks to enforce new rules.
Approximately 40,000 French people have anorexia, 90% are female. Being regarded as one of the leading countries in the fashion industry, this ban may have a domino affect and encourage other countries to follow suit.
It is uncertain what this means for the future of the modeling industry abroad or how well it will be received by the consumers of French products with healthy sized models.
Let us know your thoughts. Would you welcome these laws in Australia? Do you think that the models should have some responsibility as well as the agents who hire them?
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