Fashion Houses That Hire Excessively Thin Models Face Prison Under New French Law

Modeling agencies will need to provide medical proof that their models are of a healthy weight

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Additionally, administrators of pro-anorexia websites will face fines and longer imprisonment.

New legislation that bans the use of excessively thin fashion models passed into French law on Friday, April 3, reports Reuters.

The law will also punish the fashion houses and modeling agents that hire these models with a fine up to 75,000 euros (approximately $82,000) and six months of prison time.

Olivier Véran, the French lawmaker and physician who first proposed the law, previously indicated that modeling agencies would need to be able to provide medical proof that their models had a healthy mass-to-height ratio (BMI) before hiring them.

Marisol Touraine, the French health minister, has already expressed support for the measure. Some 40,000 French citizens are estimated to suffer from anorexia, the majority of them young women.

A second portion of the law targets websites that promote a positive view of anorexia or encourage readers to engage in dangerous eating restrictions. Administrators of such websites will face up to a year in prison, as well as fines up to $100,000 euros (approximately $110,000).  

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