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A town in France is banning smartphones

The municipality fro the protection of its residents' health

A town in France is banning smartphones The municipality fro the protection of its residents' health

In a world where smartphones have become extensions of our own being, the small town of Seine-Port has launched a revolution by prohibiting the use of phones in public spaces. This Saturday, February 3, the approximately 1800 residents of the town were called to the polls to vote for or against the ban on the use of smartphones in public spaces. This municipal referendum brought together 300 people, resulting in 146 votes for and 126 against. So, the Yes to the ban prevailed. A victory that makes the town of Seine-Port the pioneer in France to introduce such a restriction.

Mayor Vincent Paul-Petit (LR) expressed his views to Le Parisien: «I expected a larger gap. It's so intrusive. People feel like we're meddling in their lives. I don't want that! But there's a public health problem. We need to help them.» This result will lead to the development of a charter on screen usage, aimed at encouraging young people and adults to abandon their smartphones in favor of alternative activities. The charter notably encourages parents to ban screens in the morning, at the table, in the evening before bedtime, and in the bedroom. Concurrently, the municipality unveiled the introduction of a municipal decree, which will be enforced around schools, in shops, and even in open public places. In exchange, the town hall has committed to developing new sports facilities as well as a film club accessible to all residents. Furthermore, it should be noted that this charter is aimed at incentive. No sanctions are provided for in case of non-compliance.

The mayor of the town explains that the purpose of the ban is primarily of a health nature. According to a 2022 study by Odaxa, 8% of French people would be completely dependent on their smartphones and social networks. This dependence could potentially cause anxiety, depression, and a loss of the ability to communicate and interact with others in person. It can also lead to sleep problems, loss of productivity, and poor posture, according to This list of negative consequences serves as a reminder that we all would like to ignore. Yet, the impact is very real to overlook. Some may criticize this initiative as "liberticidal". However, it has the merit of triggering collective awareness regarding our dependence on smartphones. It will be interesting to study how the city will evolve following the introduction of this ban.