File 1 - Fundamental rights defence and respect of human dignity: Equality before the law

Article 1
Human dignity is inviolable. It must be respected and protected
Article 6
Everyone has the right to liberty and security
Article 20
Everyone is equal before the law

1. The legislative texts founding the Rule of Law[1]       

France has a civil law system. In such a system the main principles of the law are codified into a constitution. This contrasts with common law systems where no such constitution exists and the law is also made up of decisions of the courts within the legal system. Within France there are provisions of the various constitutions that protect the right to equality before the law.
The first of these texts is the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, 1789. This text was prior to the adoption of France’s constitution but was an important document during the French Revolution. Within Article 1 the principle of equality of all individuals is codified, the provision states that “Men are born and remain free and equal in rights”. This principle of equality was reinforced in the Preamble to France’s Constitution that was adopted after the Second World War in 1946. In the most recent version of the French Constitution from 1958 the principle of equality is once more emphasised. Within Article 1 the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of origin, race or religion is established.
Generally, due to the indivisibility of the country and universalism, France does not attribute a legal status to minorities. Instead, ‘minorities’ are considered equal to all French citizens. Certain terms such as “gens du voyage”, or “travellers”, is only used in an administrative context to refer to individuals without a fixed abode and who carry out an itinerant trade.

2. How is the equality before the law ensured?

Within France the court system and judiciary is established by the Constitution. The judiciary uphold the freedom of the individual and are required to ensure that no individual is arbitrarily obtained as required by Article 66 of the Constitution.
The European Convention on Human Rights[2], ratified in 1974 completed the constitution in particular with Article 6 [3], devoted to having a fair trial. France has been condemned several times by the European court for not respecting Article 6.
For low-income earners, legal aid may also be provided[4]. The State pays expense and fees for lawyer, judicial officer, expert….The legal assistance according to resources of the person concerned can be full or partial.
Conditions of citizenship and residence are required. The person must be French or citizen of European Union. In the other cases, the person must live in France on a continuous and legal basis.
You can download a form on a website[5] to take up a case of legal aidIt is better to be helped by a lawyer. You can seek advice from specialized associations.[6]
The recourse to the Human rights defender[7] is another possibility. Children rights, fight against discriminations, and promoting equality are among his tasks.[8]

3. The violations of the Rule of Law harming the Roma

The principle of equality of rights is not always followed. Racism and discriminations are important to Roma, French or foreigners.
For Travellers some laws limit their rights. They were submitted to special provisions about their freedom of circulation and voting rights[9]. These provisions were brought before the constitutional Court and some of them have been repealed[10] Travellers need no more to wait three-years for being registered as voters in a district.
As legal submissions in France are finished, a new complaint has been lodged before the European Court of Human Rights to examine the other causes for discrimination.

File 2 - Freedom of circulation and installation and prohibition of collective expulsions

Article 45
"Every citizen of the Union has the right to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member States."
Article 19
"Collective expulsions are prohibited"

1. National legislative texts:

The Ceseda[11]stipulates the main rules and regulations for foreigners in France, including:
  • conditions for entry and refusal of entry into the territory, waiting zones and appeals.
  • Various residence permits with conditions of residence and the mention of measures for the integration in French society.
  • Assisted voluntary return
  • Family reunification
  • Removal orders, administrative detention, deportation order and expulsion
  • Asylum rules.
The Directive 2004/38/EC of 29 April 2004 was adopted to encourage EU citizens to exercise their right to move and reside freely within Member States[12].
The 16 June 2011[13]an Act and a Decree[14]relating to immigration and French nationality are passed in order to transpose several EU directives into domestic law. These cover:
  • Common standards and procedures for Member States, whereby illegally staying third-country nationals[15] may be removed from their territories. It lays down provisions for terminating illegal stays, detaining third-country nationals with the aim of removing them, plus procedural safeguards.[16]
  • Conditions of entry for highly qualified non-EU nationals. It creates a “European Blue Card” and sets out the conditions and rights of residence in the issuing as well as in other Member States.[17]
  • The employment of non-EU nationals who are illegally staying in the European Union (EU), in order to counteract illegal immigration.  It provides minimum common standards for sanctions and other measures (disqualification from public benefits, etc.) and, in serious cases, criminal penalties against employers of these third- country national.[18]
This law goes beyond the transposition of the Directives by containing provisions on, for example, administrative decision of house arrest. Some rights for foreigners are limited:
  • Duration of administrative detention is longer
  • Restriction for legal aid before the National Asylum Court.
  • Creation of the Obligation to Leave French Territory, OQTF[19] without delay for return. The previous 30-day delay for appeal is reduced to 48 hours
  • Creation of special temporary waiting zone according to the needs.
The 31 December 2012 Act concerns detention for an audit on the right of residence and amending the offence for helping the illegal stay in the country when based on humanitarian grounds.[20]
The identity booklet or “carnet de circulation”[21] had to be stamped every three months. This was considered a disproportionate violation of the freedom of circulation. However the Court upheld the use of the « livret de circulation »[22] but limited its control to a yearly checking plus, the obligation to be settledin a municipality even though the number of travellers should not exceed 3% of the total population.

2. The implementation of these rights: the national requirements

Any citizen of the European Economic Area (EEA) can enter and stay in France for less than three months by virtue of having an identity card or a valid passport[23]. They can stay in order to work or become a student, they may be accompanied by their close family members (spouse or relatives in the ascending line- except for students or relatives in the descending line) if their family is from the European space[24]. If not working, they must be self-supporting.
If they intend to have their usual residence in France they must be registered within three months after their arrival at the town hall of their residence.[25]After five years of legal residence, they can obtain a permanent residence permit from the Prefecture of their place of residence.[26]

3. Discriminations made to the Roma and violations of the law

Restrictions of the right to freedom of movement and residence, derogations:

According to the circular letter of 10 September 2010[27], citizens of the countries which joined the EU on 1st January 2007 (Romania and Bulgaria) must apply for a work permit to get a job and for a residence card, during a transitional period (which ends at the start of 2014), whether they have a job or not.
However, it is possible for a citizen of the European Economic Area to be refused the right of free movement and residence on grounds of public policy or unreasonable burden for the social insurance system. The reasons of denial depend on the current political circumstances.

Dismantling of illegal camps for Member States' nationals:

The circular letter of 24 June 2010, paragraph 2.2[28], evokes the reasons for eviction as well as the lack of resources. The text also asks the security forces to carry out removals for the people who are illegally present on the territory. On these grounds, Romanian and Bulgarian citizens, and thus Roma people, can be required to leave the French territory (OQTF), due to an administrative measure that is used to affect foreigners from the EU or non-EU countries.
The inter-ministerial circular letter of 26 August 2012[29] on organising and implementing the removal of the illegal camps does not repeal the former 2010 circular letter. Admittedly, alternatives should be sought for people living in these camps when there are security issues. The Court decisions and the people’s rights are emphasised. Any solutions for the camp’s inhabitants should be looked for. Nevertheless this law still obeys the 2010 circular letter on the eviction of illegal camps and deportation measures for undocumented foreigners.
The appraisal of regular residence is difficult during police missions of evacuation. The measures of removal are individual but the reasons on which the deportation (OQTF) is based are stereotyped: either people have no money or they represent an unreasonable burden for the social insurance system.
No measure in the circulars of 2010 and 2012 organized the collective deportations prohibited by Article 4, Protocol 4 from the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms[30].
In fact, situations vary according to the attitude of the local authorities.

4. Possible appeals

To challenge a decision to deport, filing an action is necessary at the administrative court within the jurisdiction of the prefecture responsible for the decision. The action is in the form of a revocation request to ask the judge to assess the legality of the decision. This request must submit all the arguments demonstrating that the prefecture made a mistake in making his decision. To write this request, the assistance of a lawyer or the help of a civic association dealing with foreigners’ rights is required.
The court must return a verdict within three months. During this period of time, being removed is legally forbidden, but should the people be arrested by the police, they could be placed under administrative detention.[31]
Travellers :see file 1

File 3 - Right to access decent housing

Article 7
Everyone has the right to respect for his or her private and family life, home and communications

1. The legislative texts applying the rights to housing and to decent housing

The right of housing
In its decision of 19 January 1995[32], The Constitutional Council refers to the Preamble of the Constitution of 27 October 1946, and considers that “the possibility for anyone to access a decent housing is objective of constitutional value".
In its decision of 13 August 1993[33], the Constitutional Council asserted that “Foreigners who enjoy the rights of social protection when they live in a stable environment under regular conditions in France, must benefit from recourses guaranteeing these rights and liberties.” This decision concerns Europeans and non-Europeans living in regular conditions.
The law of 5 March 2007, known as ‘Dalo law’, established the right to housing[34]. The circular letter of 26 October 2012[35] established the principle that “anybody or any family with difficulties because of inadequate income or living conditions can assert their right to housing.” The law requires eligibility conditions to be recognized as priority cases and in emergency situation.
For travelling population: 
The law of 5 July 2000, known as the second ‘Besson Law’[36] on reception and housing of Travellers, reinforces the obligations for elaboration and implementation of a departmental arrangement for the reception of travellers. The law stipulates that municipalities of more than 5,000 inhabitants must provide travellers with temporary or permanent[37]resting sites, under departmental plans.
A circular of 17 December of 2003 permits the possibility of family sites. When bought by the Travellers, they can receive caravans for a permanent residence[38]. The number of caravans is defined by the circular.
The national definition of decent housing
The decree of 30 January 2002 specifies the characteristics of decent housing.[39]
It defines all the characteristics required for physical security and health of people living there. Decent housing must contain proper heating, drinking water and sewage disposal.
The accommodations must have one main room of a living area covering a minimum of 9 square metres and a living space equal to 20 cubic metres.A kitchen, or a kitchen corner,fitted out so as to house a cooking appliance and include a kitchen sink connected to hot and cold water and with sewage disposal.A sanitary facility inside the dwelling includes a toilet, separate from the kitchen and the room where meals are eaten, and equipment for washing, including a bath or a shower furnished to ensure personal privacy, equipped with hot and cold water with a sewage disposal. The sanitation of one-room housing may be limited to a toilet outside housing provided that the restroom is located in the same building with easy access.A power grid permitting adequate lighting of all the rooms and domestic appliances indispensable to daily life.
Texts stating the rights/duties of an owner and a tenant
The law of 6 July 1989 to improve the rental relationships and amending the law of 23 December 1986[40] indicates that the right to housing is a fundamental right and defines the obligations between lessors and tenants[41].

2. Housing market for settled population:

Rents and their evolution are supervised[42]. Rental rate freedom is only applied for special cases (as new or renovated housing) and is defined by the 6 July 1989 Act.
The market varies between regions. Home ownership has increased because of low rate loans but it could lead households to financial hardship.
Access to rental housing of social or private sector is impossible for people with low-income or on social assistance. More than 3 million people endure poor-housing problems, 685,000 of which don’t own their house and live in makeshift shelter all year long[43].
Private and public actors able to provide housing
For private sector, the lessor could be the owner, or estate agencies working for an owner or a legal entity (banks, insurance companies, etc.)
For the social sector, local authorities or State propose the attribution of social housing, the Public Housing Office (OPH)[44] administer them. There are three categories of social housing: PLAI[45] for low income household, PLU[46] for middle income and PLS[47] for higher income household. The latter pays a higher rent if their income exceeds the upper limit fixed by the administration of HLM.
Requirements asked by owners to access to housing
Documents to check the identity and the income of the candidate can be required. The law only mentions what documents cannot be required[48].To have access to social housing[49], an application must be submitted to the social services at the local City Hall.
It is necessary to prove people have an income, (including financial assistance and social allowance), an identification document, and to mention the reasons for the request. It can be because the housing is too small for the family, inadequate for disabled or elderly citizens, or in case somebody lives with his parents, and in the event of divorce.
The attribution board eventually makes decisions.
Type of housing available for population with a socio-economic profile like Roma
More than 100 000 persons are homeless or live in substandard or unsecure housing as shown in the report of the Fondation Abbé Pierre[50]on poor housing.
People in vulnerable situations are accommodated in temporary shelters such as barracks and gymnasiums during winter (till 31 March).
Some less precarious options are sometimes available for Roma people who are successful in getting a job and a residence permit. Some municipalities have implemented in their area “villages d’insertion”[51], a specific system of temporary housing for families living in slums or squatting. These “villages” are contested both by Roma and associations because of the selective conditions of implementation and binding functioning rules.
For the Travellers «  Gens du voyage » (see also file 9)
Towns of more than 5,000 inhabitants must establish living and transit sites for travellers. Arrangements for granting the aid are provided[52] by the State. The region, the department, and the family allowance fund can also help. If municipalities fail to comply with the law, the Prefect can carry out the departmental arrangement for the reception of Travellers at the expense of the municipality[53]. The Ministry of Ecology, Energy, Sustainable development and the Sea published in 2009 a guide for the housing of Travellers[54]. Technical standards have been defined[55].

3. The common abuses/discriminations occurring and faced by the Roma

Roma people live generally in unacceptable conditions, often in slums or in squats. The municipalities have some obligations. They are to be contacted to provide access to safe water, proper sanitation and have garbage dumpsters making regular collections.
The inter-ministerial circular letter of 26 August 2012[56] (see file 2) provides solutions[57] for housing but it is not adequately applied.
The Dalo Law should allow the Roma from Romania or Bulgaria to access decent housing.
But to be eligible, it is necessary to be a French native, or for foreigners to have the right of residence or a residence card. Because of transitional measures this law does not apply to Roma from Romania or from Bulgaria.
For Travellers: the implementation of the 5 July 2000 Act is partial but parking prohibition on a large part of the territory has become the rule for Travellers. Evictions, permitted by the law (article 9), are made easier and irregular parking is penalized. It is provided by the Internal Security Law of the 18 March 2003[58] on crime prevention[59].

4. Possible recoursesto make these rights respected

In the event of a breach of the law, remedies can be provided before administrative tribunals and administrative appeal courts. The administrative court of Toulouse points out that the law is the same for foreigners[60]
If no solution is offered within legislated time limits, the person can appeal to the administrative court. With the DALCOM procedure[61], if one is found to have no priority by the DALO committee or if this committee does not reply within the time period laid down, he/she can file an internal administrative appeal or contest the decision to the administrative court.

File 4 - Right to access education

Article 14
Everyone has the right to education

1. The national legislative texts applying the right to education on its greater meaning:

  • The Preamble of the Constitution of 27 October 1946 mentions/ states that the Nation guarantees children and adults access to instruction, professional education and culture. The organization of free public and secular compulsory education at all levels is a state obligation"[62]. This preamble is integrated into the Constitution of the 5th Republic.[63]
  • Education Code : "Schooling is mandatory for children of both sexes, French and foreign, aged between 6 and 16 years”[64]
  • The Penal Code defines as a criminal offence “the fact that parents or any person having legal or de facto parental responsibility over a child, do not enroll the child in an educational establishment without reasonable excuse.[65]
For Travellers and non-sedentary families the circular letter n° 2002-101 du 25-4-2002 [66] confirms that children have equal rights to schooling and says that in each department teachers with specific skills can assist the regular school teachers.

2. The implementation of this right (see also file9):

School is not compulsory before the age of 6. But French or foreign children, can attend nursery school from the age of 3. If classes are not full 2-year old children can attend if they are physically and psychologically ready for it.
A private or a public school can be chosen. In the case of the first enrollment in a public school, it is necessary to get in contact with the town council in order to know the school of the area; the following documents will need to be presented:
  • family record booklet, national ID card or birth certificate.
  • proof of a fixed address, but this is not a legal requirement,
  • a document certifying that the child has received the mandatory vaccinations for his age (against diphtheria, tetanus and polio)
The Town administration delivers a certificate of registration for the school where the child is assigned. One then needs to go to the designated school to enroll the child with the registered certificate and the other above mentioned documents.
Children from Romania or Bulgaria are often admitted into specific non French speaking[67] classes. They will carry out a French language training course before joining an ordinary class.
For secondary schools, registration takes place directly at the administrative office of the nearest school. The teenager can be admitted into a reception class [68] where a special course is offered before joining the mainstream class.
The fight against illiteracy often concerns Travellers of all ages. In many departments, tailored measures are implemented by social workers[69]who take into account specific needs relevant to the traveller’s way of life. It is also the role of the Agency against illiteracy (ANLCI)[70].
Whether a foreign Roma child or native French child, traveller or non–traveller, it is advisable to request the intervention of the district educational authorities for the schooling of newly arrived travellers’ children (CASNAV10). There is one in each educational district. There are also associations that can help such as the Association for helping in the schooling of Tsiganes Children (Aset)11& 12.
Homeschooling and common conditions:
Parents may choose to home school. If they decide so, they have to declare it with the Town Council where they reside. The educational level and health of the child will be regularly checked up on.
Distance courses and general conditions:
These are numerous. The most important is the National Centre for Distance Leaning 10, it is a French public institution. It represents the State‘s public service for distance learning and proposes courses for all levels from nursery to primary, and form secondary through to adult and the working life. 
Financial help[71]exists to help low-income families with children in Primary school.Back-to-school allowance is paid by the Family Allowance Fund (Caf[72]). Some departments give a school attendance grant[73]. It should be noted that Roma children from another Member State are often considered as illegal residents in France and as such are not entitled to receive any aid or any support from the social security French system.For secondary school students there are different aids[74]: back-to-school allowance, secondary school scholarship, merit-based scholarships, social fund. To know one’s rights and the possibilities one must get in contact with the social worker of the school.

3. Discrimination

It is difficult to enroll in school[75] for both foreign Roma or Traveller children[76]. Some Elected representatives create administrative barriers because of the prejudices against Roma and Travellers. They pretext the lack of documents but according to the circular n° 2002-101 of the 25 April 2002[77]: “If the family cannot, in enrolling their child in schoolbring the necessary documentsthe child must benefit of a temporary admission(…)”. It is said also that they do not stay enough time in the area. But these children have the same right to the same schooling conditions than the other children. Furthermore, deportations stop everything done for children at school.

4. The possible recourses to make one’s right respected

  • For any obstacle, contact the representative of CASNAV
  • It is also possible to complain to the Human rights defender[78](See file 1, 2.3)
  •  Administrative appeals: one asks the administration to review its decision.
  • Appeal to the Mayor or the Prefect of the department: one has to send to the mayor a registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt. If he maintains refusal, it is possible to appeal to the prefect (see appendix 4). As a State representative, he can execute acts required by the law.
  • If enrollment is refused, one can alert the administrative body of the National Education with an appeal to the Local Education Authority and the services of the Inspector of the school district with a registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt in order to have the law enforced.
  • Appeal in court (see also file 9)
The victim must not be alone and, if possible, must be accompanied. There are many possibilities according to one’s requests: obtaining the cancellation or the suspension of a decision of refusal for schooling or to file a complaint against the administration or of the author of a discriminatory decision.  It is necessary to be able to produce the decision of the Mayor. It could be successful but the procedure is long.
  • Other options[79] are possible
  • Outing,
  • Media coverage, at local or national levels
  • Intervention with the elected representatives
  • Contact with the associations for the defense of Human Rights[80]

File 5 - Right to access employment

Article 15
Everyone has the right to engage in work
Article 29
Everyone has the right of access to a free placement service

1. The national legislative texts relating to the right to access employment:

In the Constitution: “The French people solemnly proclaim their attachment to the Rights of Man and the principles of national sovereignty as defined by the Declaration of 1789, confirmed and complemented by the Preamble to the Constitution of 1946 (...)”where it is said “Everyone has the duty to work and the right to have a work. No person shall suffer prejudice in their work or employment on account of their origin, opinion or beliefs”
Law 69-3 of 3 January 1969[81] concerns Travellers. It governs itinerant activities and stipulates that persons who have not resided more than six months in a member state of the European Union must carry specific identification papers issued by the competent authorities. Employers must verify that the employee holds this document.
The Movement of Citizens of the European Community is governed by the directive on free movement of EU citizens of 29 April 2004 [82]: “Citizenship of the Union confers on every citizen of the Union a primary and individual right to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member States” and “Any National of a Member State shall, irrespective of his or her place of residence, have the right to take up an activity as an employed person, and pursue such activity, within the EU in accordance with the regulation for Nationals. But Romanians and Bulgarians workers are subject to exemption clauses until December 31 2013.[83]

2. The implementation of this right regarding:

Formalities for Bulgarians and Romanians[84]

  • At present, and until 31 December 2013, a Bulgarian or Romanian citizen who wishes to work in France must have a residence permit. This permit is free of charge on the first application. It is not required after1 January 2014.
To obtain it:
  • The application is submitted with the local prefecture or sub-prefecture of the Département. The applicant receives a receipt.
  • Required documentation :
  • an identitycard or passport
  • a confirmation of engagement from the employer or a certificate of employment or a proof that they are self-employed
  • in case of paid employment, a work permit
  • They may also be self-employed under the same conditions as French citizens.
Romeurop[85]offers factsheets for the creation of self-employed activities for Romanians and Bulgarians in France.
  • An employed worker must have a work permit during their first five years in France.
Two hundred and ninety-one “skill shortage profession” are more easily accessible. There are jobs open to foreigners because local demand is strong.The list is defined by a decree[86] and includeshair-dresser, cook, baker, pastry cook, construction worker, waiter, call center operator, general practitioner and specialised doctor, etc.
  • The employer should request the work permit with DIRECCTE, the Regional directorate for companies, competition, consumption, work and employment,.
Most Travellers are self-employed: small traders, craftsmen (vehicle repair, material recycling, scrap merchant, door-to-door sales, etc.). Seasonal work is common mainly in tourism and agriculture, and is covered by labour laws.
All self-employed activities must be listed in the “Répertoire des métiers”.
One must also hold a degree (most commonly a CAP - a certificate of professional competence) or have practiced the job for 3 years.
Many Travellers are skilled in one or more trades, but they don’t have experience as employees or the degree needed to register as self-employed.
Another difficulty is the high illiteracy rate which among Travellers. Many activities are regulated and the administrative procedures are complicated for people unfamiliar with forms. Not only are Travellers challenged by the red-tape, but civil servants are not familiar with Travellers either.
Associations, many of them part of the FNASAT[87], help Travellers with administrative procedures[88] and organize training sessions.

3. Common abuses/discriminations faced by the Roma

Foreign Roma are discriminated against as foreigners, and also specifically as Roma.According to an IFOP survey published on January 2012 for the Human rights Defender and for the International Labour Organization (ILO)[89], Travellers are morediscriminated against than the handicapped, racial minorities, or women.

4. Possible appeals to restore rights:

  • One may appeal to the Human Rights Defender (DDD)[90] (See file1) or to go before court (see file 9). But job discrimination is hard to prove.and time-consuming.
  • When there is a flagrant abuse of human rights, It is recommended to seek the help of groups such as the “Information and support group for immigrants (Gisti)[91]
  • The Solvit[92] may also be contacted. It is an agency of the General Secretariat for European Affairs in charge of “problems with a cross-border dimension and resulting from incorrect application of Community law by public authorities in Member States”.
  • It is also recommended to complain directly to the European Commission. The plaintiff must e-mail[93]

File 6 - Right to access health care services

Article 35
Everyone has the right of access to preventive health care and the right to benefit from medical treatment (…).

1. The national legislative texts applying the right to access health care services:

Public Health Code. Code de la santé publique –art L1110[94] : “The fundamental right to health protection must be implemented by all available means for the benefit of any person”. Health networks, including professionals, health insurance organisations or other such institutions and their users, contribute together with the health authorities to develop and provide equal access to and for each and every person needing assistance depending on their state and condition, thus continuing and ensuring the best quality of health and safety care.
On possible discriminations: Code de la santé publique Article L1110-3“No one should be discriminated against access to prevention and health care”[95]
Health care providers cannot refuse care to anybody on the grounds covered by the law on discrimination[96]or because one receives aid such as State medical aid (AME).
For rules on doctor/patient confidentiality and conditions of application:[97]
“Anyone taken into care by a professional institution, a health network or any other organisation involved in the prevention and health care has the right to respect his private life and secrecy of information about it.”[98]
In case of serious diagnosis or prognosis, medical confidentiality does not preclude notifying the family. The relatives of the sick person or the person of trust defined in the Article L.1111-6[99] receive the necessary information to provide them with direct support, unless otherwise opposed/ refused by them.Only a doctor is allowed to disclose the cause and to issue this information under his responsibility”.

2. The implementation of this right

Every major French town has a local hospital with an emergency ward capable of receiving anyone. Payment will occur later. In the case of an emergency, a special fund can cover the expenses if the emergency is deemed necessary and certified by the doctors. These conditions apply to all children under 18, to women in labour and delivery, the monitoring of pregnant women and to babies up to six months.
The French health care system is one universal health care system largely financed by government national health insurance. In its 2000 assessment of world health care systems, the World Health Organization found that France provided the "close to best overall health care" in the world.
In 2010 France spent 11.2% of its GDP[100] on health care, a figure much higher than the average spent by countries in Europe. Approximately 77% of health expenditures are covered by government-funded agencies.
Most general practitioners (G.P.) have a private practice but earn their income from the public insurance funds. The French National Health Service generally refunds patients up to 70% of most health care costs, and 100% in the case of costly or long-term ailments. Extra coverage may be bought from private insurers, most of them non-profit, mutual insurers.
Up to the year 2000, coverage was restricted to those who contributed to social security (generally, workers or retirees), excluding poorer categories of the population; the government put into place  the  universal health coverage (CMU[101]) and extended the coverage to all those legally resident in France. Only about 3.7% of hospital treatment costs are refunded through private insurance, but a much higher share of the cost of spectacles and prostheses (21.9%), drugs (18.6%) and dental care (35.9%) is paid back. There are public hospitals, non-profit independent hospitals (which are linked to the state's public system), as well as private for-profit hospitals.
The State medical aid (AME)[102]provides free medical prescriptions and hospitalisation for foreigners in irregular or unstable situations. The State medical aid allows illegal aliens to have their medical prescriptions and hospitalization taken care of without the need to advance money. Foreigners who may qualify must have lived in France for less than three months, must be “irregulars” and have an income below a definite threshold.
To benefit from the AME or CMU a form has to be obtained from the health and social centres or from the hospitals, be completed with the requested documents and returned to a social centre or the social service of the hospital.
The allocation of AME is valid for a year and is renewable. The application for the renewal must be made two months before the end of the previous period.
One of the requested documents for AME is a permanent address. CCAS (Community Centre for Social Action) or some associations can provide a home address[103] to help foreigners obtain the AME.
CMU and AME are valid for any member of the family registered on the parents’ form.Access to health care (PASS)[104] functions within the medico-social sector should facilitate the access of poor people to both the hospital system and institutional networks or associations of home care and social support.   Within the framework of the permanent access to health care (PASS), and in accordance with both public and private health facilities, the regional programme for the access to prevention and necessary health (PRAPS)11was set up. This is adapted for people in precarious situations to facilitate their access to the health system, and to accompany them with any necessary dealings regarding their rights. The concluded agreement engages the State to provide, if necessary and free of charge, the taking care of outpatients, diagnosis, therapeutic acts and treatments.12
For children under six and pregnant women, PMI centres[105] (Protection Maternelle et Infantile) are free of charge. They provide medical and social support and vaccinations. Some of them have also a family planning service. There is a PMI in every town and the list can be obtained at the town hall.
Some diseases, such as tuberculosis, HIV, contagious diseases, are treated in hospitals free of charge. 

3. The common abuses/ discriminations:

The health status of Travellers is similar to any population in precarious situations.
Determining factors of deteriorated health[106] are delay in seeking medical care, neglecting preventive approaches, living conditions and an unhealthy way of life, which include a degraded habitat and weak environment, dangerous occupational activities (metal recovery, pruning etc.). This is further intensified by discriminations based on origin, special legal status and substandard housing. There is very little early disease detection. Travellers do not meet or consult school doctors or work doctors[107].
For the foreign Roma, as for other foreign populations and for the poor, access to health care is not simple because of various problems. Except within public structures and institutions, any medical act is most of the time paid directly to the doctor after consultation and one must wait before getting the money back from the national security system. Poor people cannot afford the initial medical fees, and cannot wait to be refunded at a later date either. Some private doctors prefer not to have Roma in their waiting-room among other patients, for fear of losing their patients. Most Romanian and Bulgarian Roma do not speak French and cannot communicate with the doctors or social workers.  Very often they are not welcomed because they come as a group, and do not always respect the time of the appointment given to them. As they are very often forced by the police to leave their camping site and move on, the follow up and eventual monitoring of treatments is stopped prematurely.
Without the help of volunteers or associations, access to AME or any public structure is difficult because of all the administrative prerequisites such as giving a home address and providing family certificates.

4. The possible recourses to make these rights respected 

  • Anyone who believes to be a victim of an illegitimate refusal to be treated can refer to the director of the local health insurance body, or the professional Board. It will be considered as a complaint[108].
  • Recourse to the Human Rights defender[109] (see file 1, 2.3).He is in charge of fighting against discrimination, and also defending the rights of public service users. He can use mediation, carry out a transaction, or even take legal action.
  • In the event of serious misconduct, the victim could appeal to the labour courts[110]

File 7 - Defence of the vulnerable members of Roma community

Article 1
Human dignity is inviolable. It must be respected and protected
Article 33
The family shall enjoy legal, economic and social protection
Article 21
Any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation shall be prohibited

1. The national legislative texts

The concept of “vulnerable person” was defined in the penal code of 1994. It is used to protect the people most at risk and exposed to the serious risks of society. Vulnerability is considered as an aggravating factor when assessing the criminality of any action.
The Penal Code, Article 222-14[111] provides penalties for “regular abuses perpetrated against minors of 15 or against any person whose particular vulnerability due to age, illness, infirmity, physical or mental disability or pregnancy is apparent and known to the offending party.
For minors especially :
  • The Penal Code, Article 227-15 paragraph 2[112] states that: “keeping a child under 6 on the streets or on collective passenger transport area, with the purpose of begging for money from passers-by” constitutes a denial of care.
  • Civil Code, article 375[113]: “if the health, safety or morality of a non-emancipated minor are in danger, or the conditions for his/her upbringing, or social, intellectual, affective and physical development are seriously at risk, some educational measures can be ordered by courts at the request of the two parents or a single one, the person or authority with legal custody, the guardian, the minor child, or the Public Prosecutor”
  • In the social work and family Code, article L112-3[114]: child protection is also aimed at preventing any parental deficiency, assisting families and, providing partial or total care of minors adapted to their specific needs. In this respect, a package of interventions for minors and their parents is included, also intended for less than twenty-year old adults experiencing difficulties likely to impair seriously their wellbeing. Child protection also aims at preventing any temporary or definite difficulties due to the lack of protection from their parents and providing for their care.
The concept of “foreign unaccompanied minors” is not explicitly defined under French Law.
Their protection is based on the notion of children at risk as quoted above.
The Constitutional Court[115]believes that the Franco Romanian agreements of 2007 “on the protection of Romanian unaccompanied minors in France” added no extra guarantee of protection for Romanian minors, and that the children are essentially considered as a foreigner in an irregular situation and not as a child at risk in need of protection.
The lack of social investigation and the possibility of circumventing the children’s judge pose a serious risk for highly vulnerable minors. The law authorising the ratification of the agreement was contrary to the Constitution, due to paragraphs 10 and 11 of the Preamble of the Constitution of 1946[116] and of the article 16 of the Declaration of Human and Civil Rights of 1789.[117]
The notion of a “marginalised community”being automatically considered as vulnerable has developed. “Marginalised communities” are defined as populations or groups of persons, facing major housing problems in a specific area as well as a wealth of difficulties to overcome (health, employment, education, schooling, transportations, etc.). The implementation of adapted measures aims at promoting and facilitating their integration into the French society.

2. The implementation of their rights

The missions of social action are defined by the Social Work and Family Code[118]
  • Article L116-1 of this Code gives a definition of the social and medico-social action: It aims “to promote (…) independence and protection”, “Prevent the risk of exclusion” with different benefits implemented by the State, local authorities, public establishments, associations, social or medico-social institutions.
  • Article L116-2 : The social and medico-social action is conducted in the respect of equal dignity for all human beings with the objective to meet with the needs of everyone in appropriate manner and by guaranteeing equitable access over the territory.”
  • Article L1226-3: “The president of the General Council is responsible for collecting, processing and evaluating, at any time and whatever the source, alarming reports about minors who are or may be at risk.” The law establishes departmental reception units which collecting, process ingand evaluating alarming reports (Crip)[119]. Their mission is to centralise data and organise the follow up of children at risk by the child welfare services.
The General Council helps families encountering difficulties in upbringing their children, protects children experiencing inadequate conditions of life and education, and supports in full some of the children by providing a foster family or institutional care.
National Education [120] is also very active in the minor protection: “The education staff, and especially the social worker, aredaily relay of the national policy with the pupils”

3. The common abuses/discriminations occurring and faced by them as well as in the framework of family law:

Roma people live under permanent insecurity because of the constant threat of eviction from their camps. The minors endure poor living conditions owing to inadequate and precarious housing[121], the lack of financial resources combined with the impossibility of having a job[122], and the difficulty of schooling[123].
Moreover, some parents are forced to become beggars with their children because of the lack of income. This generates risks: an alert for education action in an open setting, (AEMO)[124], foster care, arrests. However, according to some case law, the children are not necessarily at risk [125].

4. The possible recourses to make these rights respected:

  • The children’s judge can take judicial measures to protect a minor at risk called “educational assistance measures[126] and sometimes an “interim supervision order”(OPP)[127] They are provided by the Civil code (article 375) : “If the public prosecutor is advised by the general Council president, he/she makes sure that the minor’s situation falls within the scope of Article L. 226-4 of the social work and family Code. The judge can attend to the matter on his/her own initiative on exceptional occasion”
  • It is possible to appeal to the Human rights Defender who has to defend the children’s rights[128]
  • Associations play an important role[129], in particular the platform of associations, called Infomie[130] and devoted to Foreign Unaccompanied Minors.

File 8 - Right to receive social assistance

Article 34 
The European Union recognizes and respects the right to social and housing assistance so as to ensure a decent existence for all those who lack sufficient resources

1. The national legislative texts which apply the right to receive social assistance:

Social assistance is a term used to cover the benefits paid to people living in poverty or extreme poverty. They are aimed at addressing the basic needs of these people.
The Social Work and Family Code[131] provides all the laws and regulations about social action and family.
Every person living in France, if he/she fulfills the conditions provided for in the legislation, has the ability to benefit from social assistance[132] for child welfare, accommodation or a place in a social rehabilitation center amongst other services.
For the others benefits for social assistance a resident permit is required.

2. The implementation

Social assistance involves three public stakeholders:
  • The department for social assistance for the elderly and the disabled people, child welfare and social development
  • The State for accommodation and social rehabilitation center[133]
  • The township for the Social Action Community Centers[134]
The Family Allowance Fund, (CAF)[135] is required to pay family and social allowances set by the State and aid having a social character set by the CAF itself according to local policies and actions
In some departments, there are associations to help Travellers[136], ADGV, as the one in Essonne[137], created by different partners (Sub-prefect, county administration, town councillors, volunteers, travellers, associations…) or the ADGV which sets up social accompaniment measures with the urban community of Orléans Val de Loire (AgglO).[138]
Fields concerned by social assistance
Housing (see file 3):
The joint ministerial circular of the 26 of July 21012[139] provides to find housing solutions when Roma are evicted from their settlements
Emergency housing is provided in the Social Work and Family Code (article L. 345-2)[140] without conditions of nationality or legality of stay on French territory.
To have access to emergency housing:
  • Call the emergency number, 115
  • Request housing under the integrated service of reception and orientation, (SIAO)[141]
  • Fax to the Prefect, with a copy to the administration responsible of social monitoring[142].
The Law of the 5 of March establishes the right to housing: “anybody or any family with difficulties because of inadequate income or living conditions can assert their right to housing.” The law, however, requires that the individual must be a French citizen or have a right of residence or a resident permit.
  • The Besson law of 5 July 2000 (See file 3) provides the law relating to halting sites.
  • The CAF in some department (for example Sâone and Loire, Finistère) gives grants for the restoration or the purchase of a caravan. The conditions for these aids differs between each CAF.
Education (see file 4)
  • Financial aid[143]exists to help low-income families. Back-to-school allowance (ARS)[144]is paid by the Family Allowance Fund (CAF) [145] to families who have at least one child (aged 6-18) in school. This allowance helps families to cover back-to-school expenses. It is variable, depending on age of the child and of the income of the family. The child must be registered in a public or private school, or in distance courses as the National Centre for Distance Leaning (CNED).
    • When applying for the first time applicants have to declare to the CAF their family benefits and accommodation situation and their income for the last year. It is also possible to download the application form.
  • There are other helps (see file 4). In any case, to know rights and opportunities, it is better to have a meeting with the social worker of the school or of the city hall's social services.
  • A specific aid is given by the School Fund[146], a communal public body. The School Fund helps families in difficulty, giving vouchers for purchase of shoes and clothing, school supplies. It may pay a part of fees for canteen, after-school care, leisure center etc.
  • The applications for aids are evaluated by the social worker and submitted to a commission who meets regularly.
  • TheAcademic Centers for the Schooling of Newly Arrived and Travelling Children[147], CASNAV, coordinates the reception, the orientation and the housing of the children coming from foreign countries, and also children of Travellers. According to the regions, there is a special focus on foreigners or Travellers.
  • Children from Romania or Bulgaria are often admitted into specific non-French speaking[148] classes. They will carry out a French language training course before joining an ordinary class.
  • For Travellers: some regions, some municipalities take various initiatives including:  personalised tutoring in caravans by student volunteers, help with school registration, and assistance with paying for school supplies.
Employment (see file 5):
National employment agency (Pôle Emploi),registers jobseekers and gives assistance with job-searching whilst also paying benefits to the unemployed.
The agency provides the following assistance to jobseekers[149]:
  • Jobseekers can get a formation. In that case, they may have assistance the necessary expenses, the Afaf[150]
  • There is the possibility to have help with transport and the opportunity to obtain a driving license.
  • Assistance in setting up businesses
Provision of such assistance requires that the individual has previously been employed.
Every jobseeker may registers in “Pôle emploi” with the procedural rules in force[151]. Unemployment benefit is paid to employees deprived of employment, the benefit is paid during an unsettled period which depends on the previous activity[152]. Afterwards, it is possible to get the allowance offered to people wishing to return to work (ARE)[153].
RSA (Active Solidarity Income)[154] was created to combat poverty more effectively. It is an income support payment that takes into account the earnings and expenses of a family.
Only French citizens or legal migrants can get the RSA.
Without residence permit, Romanians or Bulgarians nationals are not entitled to receive any aid or any support (family benefits, housing allowance etc.). It is necessary to have a residence card and work permit.
Retirement [155]
There are differences depending on whether the individual had worked in the private or the public sector and the number of years that they worked. Nowadays retirement age is 62 years old.
Health care (see file 6)
People with low income have access to universal medical cover (CMU)[156], to the supplementary CMU-c and, for undocumented migrants, the "State Medical Assistance"(AME)[157]. The Permanent Access to Healthcare (PASS)[158]scheme facilitates the access of poor people to the hospital system and institutional networks or associations of home care and social support.
For people benefiting from AME, it is better to go to hospital or health centers. In Paris some hospitals have continuous access to health care[159]. It is possible to contact the Medical committee for exiles (Comede)[160]
Some centers are open to everybody whether or not they receive social welfare including a mother and child center (PMI)[161] and Family Planning and Education Center (CPEF) [162]

Vulnerable members of the community: On a social level, how can they be helped if they are mistreated? Without a residence permit, Romanian or Bulgarian nationals are not entitled to receive any aid or support (family benefits, housing allowance). Very rarely, the adult with disabilities allowance has been obtained.

3. The common abuses/discriminations occurring and faced by the Roma:

The prejudices against Travellers and foreign Roma are important. There has been an increase indiscriminatory, racist and xenophobic comments of media and political figures. The special provisions[163] for Romanian and Bulgarian nationals make their life difficult in France. Although the joint ministerial circular of 26 August 2012 is providing provisions for housing Roma after a forced evictions from their places for living, these provisions are generally not applied nor are the other tools required to protect their security end their rights (among them schooling or medical follow-up continuity) out in place. This is a major issue with the policy of forced evictions done by the French government during this period.
  • For housing, the Samu social refuses to answer to the 115 when the call is for Roma
  • For health care : some doctors refuse the CMU or the AME

4. The possible recourses to make this right respected:

  • If a doctor refuses to provide medical treatment because the patient benefits from CMU or AME, the patient can report to Medical Benefits Fund or directly to Medical Board, Council of the Order of Pharmacist or the individual can ask for help from the CMU fund
  • See also the others files (particularly file 1 and 9, and for each specific social right the corresponding file)

File 9 - How to fight anti Roma discrimination

Article 21
Any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation shall be prohibited
Article 22
The European Union shall respect cultural, religious and linguistic diversity
Article 41
the right of every person to be heard, before any individual measure which would affect him or her adversely is taken; (…)
the obligation of the administration to give reasons for its decisions.

1. The national legislative texts

1-Current laws about discrimination are based (see in the appendix)
  • on the penal code 
    • Article 225-1[164] gives the various grounds for discrimination prohibited by the law. As regards Roma, the more relevant grounds are geographical origin, membership or non-membership, real or supposed, of a group of people defined as “ethnic” or as a ”race”,
    • Article 225-2[165] provides penalties for discrimination in the fields of employment, housing, education and access to goods and services.
    • Article 432-7[166] provides penalties when the discrimination is committed by a person who holds public authority or who has a public service remit when carrying out their duties
  • Labour code :
  • Article L.122-45[167] provides the prohibited grounds for basing a decision upon in relation to labour matters. As regards Roma: (…) “his/her membership or non-membership whether true or presumed of an ethnic group, a country, a race”(…)
2-The laws against racist offence[168] can be useful. Many section of the law can be used for provocation relating to discrimination, racial hatred or defamation/violence. See table in appendix.

2. The possible recourses

Independent authority: the Human rights defender[169] :
Children rights, fight against discriminations, and promoting equality are among his tasks. He receives complaints from individuals claiming to be victims of discrimination. You can contact for a free consultation a delegate in each department. There are 450 voluntary delegates from around the country.[170]
After reviewing the facts, the Human rights defender may seek resolution of the legal dispute through:
  • a mediation: chosen by the Human rights defender, the mediator hears the people involved and confronts the views. Mediation may not exceed 3 months and is renewable once.
  • a settlement: the Human rights defender suggests the offender one or more sanctions(payment of a fine, damage compensation to the victim, disclosure of facts). If accepted, the settlement must be approved by the public prosecutor;
  • a legal action : if the Human rights defender has knowledge of facts that may constitute a criminal offence or if the person refuses the settlement, the Human rights defenderrefers the case to the public prosecutor.
However, while referring a case the Human rights defender does not suspend nor interrupt the limits of the proceedings (in the context of civil, criminal or administrative appeals and litigation).
The judicial authorities
In those cases, it is safer to ask help of an association or a lawyer.
Criminal court
The victim of discrimination may file a complaint[171]. This action serves to inform the judicial authorities of the commission of the offence and have its author probably sentenced to a criminal sanction.
To obtain compensation damages, the victim may:
  • File a complaint to the police, transmitted to the public prosecutor,
  • Write a letter to the public prosecutor who will answer within 3 months and decide on prosecution or closure. If following this three-month period no response is given, it is considered as an implicit rejection,
  • Constitute oneself as a civil plaintiff if the prosecutor did not follow up on the case or did not respond within 3 months,
  • Pursue private prosecution. This procedure helps apply directly to the penal court without prior instruction as the offender is identified and notified by a court officer.
Civil court
The victim may have to include a request for damages:
  • seize the Labour Court if the offence was work related and committed within that framework.
  • enter the high court.
  • enter the district court.
Administrative court
The victim can call upon the administrative judge if the offender acts as official.
The burden of proof is a real problem. It is often difficult to prove discrimination. The applicant has to furnish proof, and evidence is often difficult to present when there is discrimination. But since 16 July 2001, the law [172] allows the reversal of the burden of proof.
The applicant must present evidence suggesting the existence of discrimination the defendant must prove that his/ her practice is not in fact discriminatory. In the light of this possibility, according to circumstances, it is better to bring action before the civil court and not before criminal court.


[3]Right to a fair trial :". In the determination of his civil rights and obligations or of any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law. (….)"
[6] See the « mallette Roms » of the LDH. Website to come.
[7] Défenseur des Droits (DDD)
[8] See file 9
[11]Ceseda, Code de l'entrée et du séjour des étrangers et du droit d'asile : Code of Entry and Residence of Aliens and the Right to Asylum;jsessionid=4923BA5847C34DABA768C980FF6851AD.tpdjo16v_1?cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006070158&dateTexte=20130306
[12] Directive 2004/38/EC of 29 April 2004
[15]a country that is not a member of the European Union.
[16] Directive 2008/115/EC of 16 December 2008 on common standards and procedures in Member States for returning illegally staying third-country nationals
[17] Directive 2009/50/EC of 25 May 2009
[18]Directive 2009/52/EC of 18 June 2009
[19] OQTF : Obligation de Quitter le TerritoireFrançais
[20]Law n°2012-1560 of 31 December 2012
[21] The « carnet de circulation » was for people engaged in a ambulant sales activity.
[22] This document is required for people who do not have a fixe domicile.
[23]Article L121-4-1 fromCeseda
[24]article 121-1
[25]Article 122-2
[31] See th « Mallette Roms » of the LDH.Siteweb to come
[32]decision n° 94-359 DC
[33]decision n° 93-325 DC
[37] Loi Besson, article 1
[38]Circulaire UHC/IUH1/26 no 2003-76 du 17 décembre 2003
[40]Law n°86-1290,
[44]OPH : Office public de l'habitatwhich are publicorprivatebodies
[45][45][45] Prêt locatif aidé d'intégration : assistedrental program
[46]Plan local d'Urbanisme : Local Town planning
[47] Prêt locatif social : social rentalloan
[51]Villages d'insertion: integration villages
[52] Loi Besson, articles 2, 4, 5
[53] Loi Besson, article 3
[57] First an emergensy housing, and then sustainable solutions, but that is difficult because there is a lack of housing
[64] Article L131-1
[65]article 227-17-1
[67]Classed'initiationpour non-francophones (Clin) : specialclassfor no frenchspeaking
[68]Classed'accueil, Cla : receptionclasse
[72]Caissed'allocationfamiliale : familyallowancefund
[76] Rapport de Romeurop, 2010 :
[79]Outing, Media coverage, at local or national levels, Intervention with the elected representatives,Contact with the associations for the defense of Human Rights See the reference book of the LDH : "les Roms migrants ont des droits »
[80]See the reference book of the LDH : "les Roms migrants ont des droits » (2013)
[81] ''Loi n° 69-3 du 3 janvier 196 relative à l'exercice des activités ambulantes et au régime applicable aux personnes circulant en France sans domicile ni résidence fixe, Version consolidée au 06 octobre 2012''
[85]Romeurop is a collective of associations that defend Roma people
[91]Gisti : Groupe d'Information et de Soutien aux Immigrés,
[94] Code pénal, article 225-1 « Discrimination is any distinction made between individuals because of their origin, sex, marital status, pregnancy, physical appearance, their name, their state of health, disability, genetic characteristics, their morals, their sexual orientation or gender identity, age, political opinions, union activities, membership or non-membership, true or supposed, ethnicity, nation, race or religion;jsessionid=BF1ACFF6362DA8057A7FEEA17B329E69.tpdjo04v_3?idSectionTA=LEGISCTA000006170991&cidTexte=LEGITEXT000006072665&dateTexte=20130421
[100] GDP : Gross Domestic Product : PIB (Produit intérieur brut)
[101] CMU : Couverture médical universelle-
[102] AME : Aide médicale d'Etat,
[104]Pass : Permanence d'accès aux soins de santé :
[105] Mother and child Center
[106] Investigation in the department of Deux-Sêvres :
[107] Magazine "Santé de l'homme" N°390 :
[109]Défenseur des Droits DDD
[111]Code pénal, article 222-14
[114]Code de l'action sociale et des familles,
[115]Décision n°2010-614 du 4 novembre 2010,
[116]Les Articles 10 et 11 assurent la protection de la famille :
[117]Any society in which the guarantee of the rights is not secured, or the separation of powers is not determined, has no constitution at all.
[119]Crip : cellule départementale de recueil, de traitement et d'évaluation des informations préoccupantes
[121] See file 3
[122] See file  5
[123] See file 4
[124] AEMO : action éducative en milieu ouvert
[127] OPP :Ordonnance de placement provisoire
[129] See the reference book of the LDH « Les Roms ont des droits », file 6
[131]Code de l'action sociale et des familles :
[136] Association Départementale Action pour les Gens du Voyage ADAGV
[145] Caisse d'allocation familiale : familyallowancefund
[146] Caisse des écoles
[147]CASNAV : Centre Académique pour la Scolarisation des enfants allophones Nouvellement Arrivés et des enfants issus de familles itinérantes et de Voyageurs
[148]Classe d'initiation pour non-francophones (Clin) : special class for no french speaking
[150]Afaf : aide aux frais associés à la formation
[153] ARE : Aide au retour à l'emploi,
[156]CMU : Couverture maladie universelle
[157] AME : Aide médicale d'état
[158]Pass : Permanence d'accès aux soins de santé :
[160]Comede : Comité medical pour les exiles,
[161] PMI : centre de protection maternelle et infantile,
[162] CPEF : centre de planification familiale et d'educatio,
[163] See file 1
[164]Is prohibited unequal treatment based on geographical origin, membership or non-membership, real or supposed, of a group of people defined as « ethnic» or as « race », genetic characteristics, handicap, health, Religion, political or trade union activities, sex or sexual identity, age, pregnancy or maternity, Sexual orientation, Manners, Marital status, name, Physical appearance.
[168] In Penal Code :
[169] Défenseur des Droits (DDD)


Appendix 1: Example of letter to appeal to the Mayor or the Prefect of the department

Monsieur le Préfet de...(ville)...
...(ville)..., le...
Lettre recommandée avec AR n° ... FR
Concerne : inscription scolaire de l’enfant...(prénom/nom)...
Monsieur le Préfet,
Nous avons été alertés par Monsieur et Madame ...(nom)... sur le problème rencontré par leur enfant mineur ...(prénom)..., né le ... à ... de nationalité ... domicilié chez ses parents à ...(adresse)...
En effet, Monsieur le Maire de ... refuse l’inscription de l’enfant en classe de ... dans l’établissement ...
En application de l’article L 2122-34 du Code général des collectivités territoriales, nous vous prions de procéder, après en avoir requis Monsieur le Maire, à l’inscription scolaire de cet enfant.
Si la situation de l’enfant n’était pas réglée dans les quarante-huit heures à compter de la réception de la présente lettre, nous nous verrions contraints de saisir les juridictions compétentes.
Nous vous prions de croire, Monsieur le Préfet, à l’assurance de notre considération distinguée.
Signature de l’association
Signatures des parents

Appendix 2: Legislation about racist offense

offense category legislation penalties Limitation of prosecution
Public provocation of discrimination, racial hatred or violence Offence Articles 23 and 24, paragraphs 8 and 9 of the modified law of July 29, 1881[1] 1-year imprisonment  and
A € 45 000 fine
1 year for religious of racist provocation3 months for provocation relating to  sexual orientation
Public defamation Offence Articles 23, 29, paragraphs 1, 32, paragraphs 2 and 3 of the modified law of July 29, 1881 1-year imprisonment  and
A € 45 000 fine
1 year for racist libel
3 months for the defamation based on  sexual orientation
Public insult Offence Articles 23, 29 paragraph 2 and 33 paragraphs 3 and 4 of the modified law of July 29, 1881 6-month imprisonment
A € 22 500 fine
1 year for racist public insult
3 months for public insult based on sexual orientation
Non-public provocation to discrimination, racisthatred or violence Contravention of the fifth class Article R. 625-7, paragraphs 1 and 2 of the penal code[2] A € 1500 fine 1 year for racist or religious provocation
3 months for provocation based on sexual orientation
Non public defamation Contravention of the fourth class Article R. 624-3 paragraphs 1 and 2 of the penal code[3]
Article 29 paragraph 1 of the modified law of July 29th 1881
A € 750 fine 1 year for racist libel
3 months for defamation based on sexual orientation
Non- public insult Contravention of the fourth class Article R. 624-4 paragraphs 1 and 2 of the penal code[4]
Article 29 paragraph 2 of the modified law of July 29th 1881
A € 750 fine 1 year for racist insult
3 months for the insult based on sexual orientation

Appendix 3: Discriminations in labour competent jurisdictions

    Civil courts Criminal court Administrative court
Competence   « Conseil des prud’hommes »Labour court :
Discrimination in labour relations (for example : anti-union, sex discrimination) :
District Court :
Outside contractual relationship
Discriminations hors relations contractuelles (demandes supérieures à 10 000 €)
Criminal court 
Offence of discrimination, moral or sexual harassment, infringing to the principle of equality between women and men
Competence : private and public sphere
Tribunal administratif : discriminations dans le domaine des fonctions publiques en vue d’une action en réparation et en annulation
Administrative court : in the field of public service in order to obtain an action for damage and cancellation
Request Applicants
Deadline to take legal action
Individuals, trade unions, associations (under conditions)
30 years (for reparation of injury)
5 years for salary payment          for example
Individuals, public prosecutor, trade unions, associations under conditions)
3 years
Individuals, trade unions
2 months of the date of the notification of the discriminatory decision
4 years for compensation
Proofs Burden of the proof
Mode of proof
Role of the judge for taking evidence
Sharing between applicant and defendant
Free : testimonies, writings, minutes, comparison of situation (with expert panels)
Contradictory procedure :
The judge may order production of information as it deems necessary
Applicant has the burden of proof with the public prosecutor and the investigating judge
By any means : confession, writings, testing
Inquisitoral approach
Procédure inquisitoire
Sharing between applicant and defendant
Inquisitorial approach
Procédure inquisitoire