German man sues for discrimination over female-only parking spaces introduced after woman was raped

Dominik Bayer claims the well lit spots suggest women can't look after themselves

Chiara Giordano
Wednesday 23 January 2019 20:05 GMT
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A German man has attempted to sue a town over "female-only" parking spaces which were installed in a car park after a woman was raped nearby.

The designated spots were put in place in a public car park in the Bavarian town of Eichstätt after the woman was attacked in 2016, according to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle. They are well-lit and close to entrances and exits to make parking there safer.

The area is also reported to be located close to a nursing home, where female workers often begin and finish their shifts early in the morning and late at night.

The town’s legal officer Hans Bittl has said the spots are only a suggestion to encourage men to leave them free for women and that any man who parks in one will not be prosecuted.

However Dominik Bayer claims the reserved spots discriminate against both men and women as he believes they suggest women need looking after.

The motorist, who is reported to be from the western Rhineland region, claimed the spaces go against Germany’s General Act on Equal Treatment.

However, Germany’s federal anti-discrimination agency confirmed female parking spaces do not violate equality laws.

Female-only parking spaces are commonplace in private car parks in Germany, such as in supermarkets.

Female-only parking spaces in Hangzhou, China, sparked a sexism row. (Weibo)

Extra wide parking spaces for women have previously sparked a sexism row in China.

The large bays, which are 50 per cent bigger than an average parking spot and aimed at females who ‘have trouble reversing’, were introduced as a trial in Hangzhou in March 2016.

They are outlined in pink paint and feature a pink, skirt-wearing figure in the middle.

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In 2014, the South Korean government also introduced women-only parking spaces which are longer and wider than the country’s standard bays and marked with pink outlines.

Women-only parking spots have long been installed across the world, but typically only as a public safety measure and are not normally bigger than standard spots.

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