Whistleblowers, nursing homes: What French MPs are debating this week

Our round-up of key points politicians will be looking at, and other important official dates for the week.

French parliament
MPs discuss during a parliamentary session
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This week’s discussions in the parliament will include round-table talks about care homes, after accusations of the mistreatment of residents caused a recent scandal.

Read more: Inquiries open after claims of food rationing at care homes in France

Elsewhere, MPs will discuss further decentralisation of power and greater protection for whistleblowers.

Tuesday, February 8, 2022


MPs in France’s lower house, the Assemblée nationale, will be discussing a proposed law to give better legislative protection to whistleblowers during public hearings.

Whistle-blowers are protected under the Sapin II law that guarantees they should not be prosecuted and that their identity be protected. The law punishes anyone harassing or pursuing them with criminal charges or sanctions.

The new proposal mainly aims at extending several aspects of the Sapin II law, and was put forward by centrist MP Sylvain Wasserman of the party Mouvement démocrate (MoDem).

Centralised power

The problem of France’s centralised government has been a regular political talking point for some time. A handful of MPs have put forward a proposed law aimed at giving more responsibilities to local politicians to match regional specificities and to simplify administrative red tape, including policies linked to health, education, housing and ecology.

The proposed law came about because of the ‘Grand Debat National’, a government initiative to engage with the opinions of the Gilets Jaunes.

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Road sharing

MPs are organising a round-table with members of the government, and the cycling and environmental industries to discuss space sharing on roads.

It comes as the use of various new forms of transportation have soared over the last few years, resulting in the deaths of cyclists and electric scooter drivers.

Retirement homes

Other MPs will be hearing from Amélie Verdier, Ile-de-France’s health agency director, amidst reports of the mistreatment of elderly people in nursing homes run by Orpea group, one of Europe’s leaders in the sector.

It comes after the publication of ‘Les Fossoyeurs’, an investigative book from French journalist Victor Castanet, that claimed that residents in the homes have been suffering from a lack of food and resources, and have been poorly cared for by untrained staff.

Read more: Inquiries open after claims of food rationing at care homes in France

MPs will also be reading a new version of a bill that aims at providing better and wider access to sport activities for residents of nursing homes.

The bill was brought by Céline Calvez (of the party La République en Marche).

Abortion rights

Meanwhile, in the upper house of parliament, senators will examine a new version of a proposed law on abortion rights, put forward by nearly 50 senators after it got rejected by a mixed parliamentary commission.

Under the proposed law, the legal period permitted for an abortion would be raised from the first 12 weeks of pregnancy to 14 weeks.

Midwifes would be permitted to perform surgical abortions up to 10 weeks into a pregnancy. Currently midwifes are only permitted to perform an abortion up to a maximum of seven weeks into a pregnancy, and using drugs, not by surgery.

Thursday February 10, 2022


Senators will discuss a new version of a proposed law aimed at preventing bullying in schools, bringing in tougher punishments for offenders.

The initial draft of this proposal was rejected by a mixed parliamentary commission after having been validated by both chambers.

The proposed law was brought by a list of seven MPs from LREM, MoDem and others.

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