French Government Addresses Sexual Harassment At Military Academy
The Ecole speciale militaire de Saint-Cyr is a prestigious military academy created by Napolean in 1802. It is similar in the training it provides to institutions in the United States like West Point and the United States Naval Academy. Scandal is now rocking this institution, and the French government is taking a stand against sexual harassment at this military institution.
Earlier this year, French President Emmanuel Macron received a letter from a female student at the military academy. In this letter, the female student detailed the existence of a group of male students within the academy who were opposed to female students. According to the female student's letter, about 60 male students at the academy were attempting to intimidate female students, and they were attempting to get them to withdraw from the academy.
The letter went on to detail other abuses at the academy. It has been alleged that there is abusive behavior toward women that is ignored by the administration. Homophobic behavior was also brought to the president's attention.
After investigating this and other allegations, French Defense Minister Florence Parly has announced sanctions against the military academy. She stated that any student who was found to have harassed or abused another student would be expelled from the school. Defense Minister Parly also stated that if the administration was found to be ignoring the situation, the administration may face disciplinary sanctions.
Thus far, two students are facing permanent expulsion. One of the two students has left the academy voluntarily.
Critics of the government believe that more needs to be done to address the problem at the military academy. They believe that more extensive investigations need to be undertaken as students have made accusations against many more students than the two who are facing expulsion. Critics believe that the problem of sexist behavior is rampant in the military, and it needs to be addressed in a systematic fashion that includes the military as a whole.
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