The daily life of autistic people could soon be made easier, with the adoption of a law by the Assembly aiming to devote a silent hour in supermarkets.
It was on Thursday 28 January 2021 that the Assembly adopted at first reading a law proposed by the MoDem du Cher MP, Nadia Essayan. It aims to establish a silent hour in supermarkets in order to facilitate the daily life of people with autism, especially in public places. This therefore concerns sales areas with a surface area greater than 1000 m². Supermarkets will therefore have to turn down the music and the lights, not make any audible announcements and reduce the volume of electrical appliances in operation for an hour.
This is good news for people with autism and their loved ones, but above all a relief. Indeed, there are many associations which, until now, deplored a society unsuitable for mental disorders. "Society has not yet adapted to mental and neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism, which remain unknown to politicians", explains for example Olivia Cattan to the newspaper The cross.
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It was in 2019 that MP Nadia Essayan changed the game with this bill. This way of making life easier for people with autistic disorders has already been tested in New Zealand. In France, in 2018, a Hyper U in Vierzon, in the Center-Val de Loire region, experienced it after receiving an alert from the association Hope for my future. A young girl with autism felt particularly attacked by the lights and sounds of the supermarket, which has since decided to establish a "silent hour" to adapt to people with mental disabilities.
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This initiative, quite laudable, was therefore carried by Nadia Essayan the following year in the hope of democratizing this silent hour to all supermarkets in France. "People who suffer from autistic disorders feel light and sound more intensely than us and this can cause real suffering and suddenly, an impediment to go to these places", she explained at the time, as recalled France Info. The law was passed unanimously in the Assembly and is expected to be implemented in 2022.