The French government is set to come out in support of draft legislation banning catwalk models deemed to be excessively thin.

The bill will also impose fines on the fashion house or modelling agencies involved in hiring the offending models. Some fashion agents, it is claimed, could even be sent to jail if found guilty of promoting size-zero culture. When the new laws are passed, France will join Italy, Spain and Israel, which have all enacted legislation to ban overly thin models from participating in fashion events.

The law would make it mandatory for models to have frequent weight checks. If the law is broken, models found to be breaking the law could be hit with fines of up to €75 000. Any staff breaching the law could face half a year in jail, according to the magazine Le Parisien. Applicants for Medicine will be interested in the health implications which result from being extremely thin – will proposals such as these help combat the scourge of anorexia, which is so prevalent in the 21st century?

Law applicants could pick up on the legal aspects of the story, in considering what challenges legislators face when drafting a law which is designed, in effect, to outlaw a particular lifestyle choice.

Finally, HSPS applicants might wish to consider the sociological issues involved. How do role models in society affect human behaviour, particularly that of young people?

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