Lunchtime News Thursday 5th August 2021


Restaurants in Brittany refuse to carry out controls as France awaits decision today from Constitutional Council - As France today awaits a decision from the Constitution Council, concerning the health pass, expected to be announced this afternoon. About fifty restaurants in Brittany have refused to carry out controls, saying that refuse to play the role of the “health police” adding that the introduction of the pass "crosses the line" and they wish to "defend the freedom of individual movement in public places".

French President says health passes will not be required from nursery to college – Meanwhile French President Emmanuel Macron has assured that the health pass will not be required in schools from "nursery school to college". In a video posted on Instagram, Macron said that wearing a mask in class would still be necessary and that vaccination campaigns against covid would be organized in college and high schools for 12 to 17-year olds who wished to get vaccinated.

Foreign tourists will be able to obtain health passes in France from August 9th - According to France’s Secretary of State for Tourism Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, foreign tourists will be able to obtain health passes from August 9th. Lemoyne said he welcomed the end of the quarantine imposed on France by the United Kingdom and that he hopes for a similar release with the United States within “the coming days”. He went on to say that the government’s "goal is that from August 9th foreign tourists"  (from outside of the EU) present in France "can begin to obtain health passes, on the same model as the French established outside of France" with a system dedicated to these requests being put in place. Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne hopes that the easing on restriction announced on Wednesday by the UK "will perhaps allow British tourism to return to France”.

In other news

Water restrictions introduced in the Var - The Var region has introduced water restrictions. The prefecture of the region filed an order for the restrictions to be implemented in the catchment area of Argens and Agay which has been placed on a drought crisis.

Nearly 75 municipalities in the department are concerned. Watering is prohibited at any time in gardens and green spaces, Stadiums and golf courses are also restricted in their use of water.

The measure also implies a ban on washing cars, boats, roads and terraces, except for a sanitary imperative. Private pools and spas cannot be filled, water games are also prohibited, unless they use recycled water and all fountains are cut off. Failure to comply with the restrictions may result in a fine of 1,500 euros.

Extension of Cannes-Grasse dual carriageway refused - The Council of State has refused the extension of the dual carriageway between Cannes and Grasse. The plan had been put forward to ease traffic in the area by extending the dual carriage way between the stadiums of Perdigon and Jean Girard. The project was estimated at nearly € 100 million.

Motorcyclists to pay for parking in Nice – A proposal has been put forward by Nice’s deputy mayor Gael Nofri to make motorcyclists in Nice pay for street parking. At present 20% of parking spaces in the city are dedicated to two-wheelers.  

And Finally

The traditional French way to greet one another known as 'La bise', with a kiss on each cheek, might not make it in the post-COVID world.

The French greeting is a tradition dating back to the Romans, however, despite some going back to using it on a daily basis, others are strongly opposed to the idea of 'la bise' reclaiming its place in the French society.

According to a survey, more than half of the French population said they were done using 'la bise' altogether.

More than 75 per cent of respondents said they would only continue to use it with people they were close to, such as their family members.  

It’s not the first time an airborne disease has forced the French to question the traditional 'la bise'. The Black Death saw physical contact among people became similarly limited.  

'La bise' ended up surviving the plague, and was reintroduced into society during the French Revolution of 1789, becoming once again cemented as a daily act after the First World War.

'La bise', during this period, is thought to have strengthened two of France's national values, fraternité and égalité. 


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