Paris’ Fine-Worthy Crime? Putting Too Many Women In Power
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo called out the fine by the Ministry of Public Service as“unfair” and “absurd.”
Paris city hall has been fined 90,000 euros, or more than $100,000, for appointing too many women to senior positions — a punishment that Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo called “unfair” and “absurd.”
According to a 2013 law, meant to ensure that more women hold senior civil service jobs, each gender must make up a minimum 40% of appointments in government positions. Neither is allowed to surpass 60%.
But in 2018, 11 women were appointed as senior officials, as were five men — or just more than 30% . So, the Ministry of Public Service issued a hefty fine.
During a Tuesday meeting, Hidalgo, who is a member of the Socialist party joked that, “the management of the city hall has, all of a sudden, become far too feminist." Hidalgo is the first woman mayor in the city’s history.
According to French publication Le Monde, a 2019 measure that took effect in June provides an exemption to the law if the new hires do not lead to an overall gender imbalance. That’s the case for Paris, which has 47% of female senior executives, but the measure took effect too late to divert the fine.
On Tuesday, Hidalgo also said she would deliver the check to the Ministry of Public Service herself along with the women in her government.
"So there will be many of us," she said.
Amélie de Montchalin, French minister of state for European affairs, responded to Hidalgo on Twitter, pointing out the 2019 law change.
“The cause of women deserves better,” she said. “I want the fine paid by Paris for 2018 to finance concrete actions to promote women in the public service. I invite you to the ministry to raise them!"