How France’s skittishness about collecting data on race affects its coronavirus response
Now recovering, Allouache assumes he must have picked up the coronavirus while campaigning. Indeed, the poor and multiracial communities north of the capital have been hit especially hard by the coronavirus, with the department of Seine Saint Denis recording a 120 percent increase in deaths compared with the same period last year.
But Allouache and others say that understanding why has been hindered by France’s skittishness about collecting data on race and ethnicity. While the United States and Britain have found that their racial minorities are dying disproportionately of covid-19, the French government has not conducted that sort of analysis. Critics say France may be limiting its ability to identify and protect vulnerable populations, especially in the event of a second wave of the pandemic.
“For me, I dream of ethnic statistics,” Allouache said. “We are scared of the reality.”
French law largely bans the collection of data on an individual’s race, ethnicity or religion. That’s in reaction to World War II, when French authorities classified Jewish citizens in a way …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]