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Lausanne: Begging: the Legislative wants to show the way to the Executive & More Breaking News

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LausanneBegging: the Legislative wants to show the way to the Executive

In view of the revision of the Vaud law on begging, the Vaud capital wants to weigh all its weight in the debates. In a narrow vote, the Municipal Council declared itself against the generalization of the ban.

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Abdoulaye Penda Ndiaye
The debate on begging arouses tensions.

The debate on begging arouses tensions.

24 hours/ Florian Cella

With energy and begging on the menu of the Lausanne municipal council on Tuesday evening, as was to be expected, the atmosphere was electric. The subject of almsgiving was even more so. Between the right and the left, the passes of arms have not failed. In anticipation of the Vaudois law on begging which must be challenged to be in harmony with the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, part of the left wanted to show that the position displayed by the Vaudois capital during the consultation procedure carried out by the township was not supported by the majority of the legislature. The City of Lausanne has, in fact, wanted begging to be banned inside public transport, at stops, terraces and markets.

With one voice

Where elected officials on the left castigated “the criminalization of poverty”, those on the right demanded the protection of citizens against “insistent, intrusive and aggressive demands”. By an urgent interpellation, the Green Ilias Panchard asked the Executive to “not go wrong on begging”. In particular, he wanted the City’s police regulations to be “no more restrictive” than the Vaud law, which is currently being revised. At the end of the vote, it was perfect equality between partisans of yes and no: 30 votes on each side. The dominating voice of Magali Crausaz Mottier, the green president of the Legislative, tipped the scales in favor of yes. “The Municipal Council has corrected the situation and requires the Municipality to immediately review its scandalous position on begging. We don’t want a blanket ban on begging. The Greens and Young Greens will not drop the file,” said Ilias Panchard.

The Legislative also declared itself in favor of an “international solidarity action” in favor of the regions of origin of the people who practice begging in Lausanne by 49 yes, 16 no and 2 abstentions.

No Lausanne specificity

But for Pierre-Antoine Hildbrand, elected PLR responsible for security, it is as if the cart had been placed before the horse. “The Vaudois law should be clarified in order to be applicable by the police. However, there is no question of imagining specific Lausanne rules in this area. Cantonal law will be exclusive and exhaustive,” he argued.

Shocking remarks

But remarks about the Roma caused an outcry during the debates. “There is no begging out of necessity but organized begging in Lausanne. Begging is an integral part of Roma culture. It’s a cultural problem,” said Xavier Cid. This made Franziska Meinherz (EàG) react, who shouted at a violation of the criminal standard against racism, before demanding “respect for the law within the hemicycle”. His outrage was greeted with applause.

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