Women are allowed to swim topless in public pools, Berlin says
Women have the right to swim and sunbathe topless in Berlin swimming pools after a ban was challenged on gender equality grounds.
Authorities said the move “creates equal rights for all Berliners, whether male, female or non-binary” as women can now wear similar clothing to men.
“In the future, topless swimming should also be possible for women or people with female breasts,” said the city’s equal opportunities officer.
The decision comes after a lawsuit was filed by a woman who was thrown out of a pool for sunbathing topless.
In December, Lotte Mies, 33, was ordered to cover up at an indoor swimming pool in Berlin after going topless.
“The police officer asked me what gender I identify with. When I said ‘female’ it meant I had to wear a top,” she told the Bild newspaper.
Ms Mies filed a complaint with Berlin’s Equal Opportunities Authority, which said it was discrimination to prevent women from going topless if they wanted to.
The capital’s rules for public swimming pools only insist that swimsuits cover the genitals, the watchdog said.
“Equal rights for all”
The Berlin swimming pool operator, Berliner Bäderbetriebe, issued a clarification that this regulation applies to all swimmers, regardless of their gender.
“Now it is important that the regulation is applied consistently and no more evictions or house bans are issued,” said the head of the Ombudsman’s Office, Doris Liebscher.
Katharina Mittler, 25, sports student from Berlin-Mitte: “It’s the same rights for everyone.
“We don’t have to be sexualized just because we’re women. I would also go topless in an indoor pool myself. I have no problem with that,” she said.
The attitude towards public nudity is much more liberal in Germany than in Great Britain Nudity is considered healthy in certain contexts.
Naturism remains influential and Germans are as comfortable in parks and saunas as most Brits are not.
But the extent to which this applies to municipal swimming pools has been the subject of debate throughout Germany.
Göttingen in Lower Saxony and Siegen in North Rhine-Westphalia allowed women to swim topless last summer.
https://news.yahoo.com/berlin-grants-women-swim-topless-153801723.html Women are allowed to swim topless in public pools, Berlin says