French mayor bans Aids campaign posters 'to protect children'

Subliminal messaging about one-night stands would confuse young people, Bruno Beschizza says

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The Independent Online

A French mayor has decreed that posters promoting an Aids prevention campaign should be taken down to protect children.

Bruno Beschizza claimed the Government's public health posters, which depict men kissing and embracing along with slogans extolling the benefits of contraceptives, would confuse children.

Mr Beschizza, who is the mayor of Aulnay-sous-Bois near Paris, said the campaign's "subliminal messaging" about one-night stands lacked context, BFMTV reported.

One of the banned AIDS prevention campaign posters
One of the banned AIDS prevention campaign posters (BFMTV)

One of the posters reads: "With a lover, with a friend, with a stranger - the situation changes and forms of protection do too."

But Clio Léonard, of the LGBT support group Le Refuge, said: "Removing these posters makes no sense and could make our young people uncomfortable, and to feel rejected all over again because of their sexual orientation or gender identity."

Mr Beschizza's action was echoed by another mayor, Christophe Béchu, who asked the JC Decaux company to remove the posters from his town of Angers, near the Loire Valley in western France.

He said the posters were "deliberately shocking" and had been put up near schools. Young children would not be able to understand their message, he said.

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