Friday, December 5, 2014

Homeless people in one city in France forced to wear Yellow Triangles [A direct reminder of Nazi-era policies.]

This is mindboggling.

In the major port city of Marseille, on the Mediterranean Sea, homeless people in the were told that they must wear visible cards with a yellow triangle. On the back of the card is information about the homeless person’s health issues.

This is outrageous because Jews and other people that Nazis had targeted for extinction were made to wear a triangle (albeit sewn to clothing) in France during WWII.

The cards make the homeless people targets -- identified vagrants -- making of them government-identified unacceptable citizens.

The picture at the top of this post comes from the website “The Local,” which prints news from France in English. It’s part of an active story that the website is following.

From the first story comes this expression of outrage from the leader of a homeless charity in Marseille, a French city second only to Paris in population.
“This is scandalous, it’s stigmatizing,” Christophe Louis, president of the homeless charity Collectif Morts de la Rue, told The Local. “Wearing something that shows the whole world what illnesses you have is not only discriminating but it also breaches all medical confidentiality,” he said, adding that the symbolism in the design of the card is outrageous. “Being identified by either a star or a triangle is horrific,” he said.
From the Dec. 4 issue of a French daily Le Parisien the Social Affairs Minister of France is quoted:
I’m shocked. Forcing homeless people to carry a yellow triangle indicating the illnesses they might have is outrageous. You don’t point the finger at the poorest.
Defensive reaction from Marseille authorities is noted here [quoting, again, The Local]:
… authorities say the purpose is to help health workers quickly come to the aid of a homeless person who has fallen ill or is in need of aid.

Over 100 of the identifications have been distributed already.

On Wednesday [Dec. 3], about 100 activists and homeless people protested against the initiative outside the city’s town hall.

For its part Marseille Town Hall has been outraged by the criticism it has endured by issuing “the card that saves lives."
The very latest news, from today, Dec. 5, is that because of the upheaval over the cards, the program of making homeless people wear cards is to be ended.


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