The Defender of Rights is worried and returns the points on the "i". While some traders and large chains have taken the initiative to refuse cash payments in order to avoid contact with customers in full containment, the administrative authority is sounding the alarm: this practice deprives a fringe of the population , especially the most disadvantaged, of "access to basic necessities".
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An illegal practice
In a press release published on Monday, the Defender of Rights recalls that many people, in particular those "in a particular situation of economic vulnerability such as the elderly", or those "receiving the minimum benefits", "do not have payment cards" . Pointing that this refusal is "not part of the restrictive measures relating to the fight against the spread of Covid-19", he warns that this practice is "prohibited by law" and "likely to come under texts which prohibit discrimination".
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An appeal to the government, merchants and large retailers
The Defender of Rights therefore asks the government to "guarantee the use of means of payment" and calls on "professionals in trade and large distribution [...] to accept" cash, "in accordance with their legal obligations".
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In addition, he indicated to monitor closely the evolution of precariousness that could cause difficulties in the payment of social assistance, due to the closure of many post offices in the territory.