Has Germany Allowed Women to Swim Topless as Claimed?

This tweet claims that Germany permitted women to swim topless for gender equality purposes.

Background

According to Forbes, a swimmer in the German city of Gottingen was denied access to a local swimming pool after declining to cover his torso. The transgender swimmer said that he identified as male. Despite the contention, the pool authorities expelled her from the premises.

Such cases are not uncommon. In 2017, a woman in Ontario went to court protesting her right to swim topless in hotels after she was refused permission without any reason or explanation. 

In a similar case in Spain, the Deputy Mayor of Barcelona stated that ‘all women who want to do topless can do it’. Legal reports declared that any center that does not comply could face a fine. 

Verification

 Deutsche Welle states that Gottingen, a city located in Germany, is the first place in the country to permit female swimmers to swim bare-chested after a gender identity row. The recommendation was reportedly made by the sports committee on grounds of gender equality. 

An article by the Daily Mail detailing the same case reads, “Sports Committee of Gottingen has recommended to the city’s indoor and outdoor pools that all swimmers be allowed to bathe without a top at weekends from May 1, 2022.”

The Deutsche Welle report goes on to quote a city spokesman noting that the test phase which permits women to swim topless on weekends will be effective till the end of August 2022.

However, it is important to note that the change only affects the city of Gottingen, not the whole of Germany. 

Verdict

Claims that Germany has allowed women to swim topless are MISLEADING.

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Thomas Mukhwana

Thomas Mukhwana is a broadcast journalist and fact-checker. He is passionate about storytelling, sustainable development and policy in the African context.