One more step in the fight against sectarian excesses was to be taken on Wednesday November 15. The Secretary of State for Citizenship and the City, Sabrina Agresti-Roubache, was to present to the Council of Ministers a bill aimed at strengthening the existing legislative arsenal to combat sects. The text is part of a national strategy to combat a phenomenon which, according to the number of reports received by the interministerial mission for vigilance and the fight against sectarian aberrations (Miviludes), seems to be growing. The institution recorded 4,020 referrals in 2021an increase of 36% compared to 2020.
“Sectarian aberrations have evolved profoundly over many years, writes the Secretary of State in a press release. In addition to groups with religious pretensions, there are a multitude of groups or individuals who invest in the fields of health, food, well-being, but also personal development, coaching or training. » Situations which would have been favored, according to her, by the health crisis “with its periods of confinement” And “difficult economic and social conditions”which would have helped to “the emergence of discourses that exploit isolation and call into question science and the credibility of health authorities”.
Major prevention campaign
Divided into seven articles, the bill takes into account the omnipresent nature of health in sectarian aberrations. Thus, a quarter of the reports to Miviludes revolve around this subject. This is why the text introduces a new offense, that of “provocation to the abandonment or abstention of care or to the adoption of practices which it is clear that they expose the person concerned to a serious or immediate risk to their health”. The idea being to “sanction the most dangerous practices for people’s health, paying particular attention to practices relating to well-being, care and nutrition”.
The bill also provides for informing the professional orders on which the offenders depend in order to also sanction them in this way. These organizations could be informed by the public prosecutor’s office “even non-final convictions of professionals subject to their control, as well as their placement under judicial supervision”. Although the text is presented to the Council of Ministers on Wednesday, no timetable for examining the law in Parliament has been set.
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