The Short Blue Line for police?

Image: TV Tours

Le Figaro in English, 11/08/2010 (TRANSLATION)

[DIGEST] – French police & prison officers will no longer be required to measure more than 1.6m (5ft 3in) in height. On Tuesday the Ministry of Labour repealed a number of the conditions of physical aptitude to becoming an officer.

In a decree published in its official Journal the Ministry repealed certain restrictions, notably on size and weight, for taking the entrance examination. The restrictions date back to the ‘ancien régime’, the system of governance in France between the 14th and 18th century. Back then the new recruits to the royal army had to measure at least 5 feet 3 inches in height.

Other conditions removed include suffering from a medical infection, or a neurological, physchiatric or heart-related illness. Prison officers and customs officials will also be subject to the new changes.

In addition to size, Body Mass Index (BMI) – the ratio between the weight in kilograms and height in metres squared– will no longer be taken into account when selecting candidates. They will now be examined on a case-by-case basis by a licensed physician.

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