The Student News Site of Tenafly High School

The Echo

The Student News Site of Tenafly High School

The Echo

The Student News Site of Tenafly High School

The Echo

Paris Plagued: Is the U.S. Next?

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In Paris, videos of creepy crawlers in homes, movie theaters, and even on the metro have taken over social media, and bed bug anxiety has reached an all-time high. The recent surge began just before Paris Fashion Week, and with the increased travel during such a time, concerns of bedbug infestation coming to the U.S. have surfaced. Plans for the 2024 Olympics to take place in France have added fuel to the fire, as millions of people are expected to travel to Paris, putting pressure on French authorities to fix this problem as soon as possible. 

Anses, a French health agency, shed light on the roots of the upsurge, attributing it to increased travel and pesticide-resistant bugs, saying, “upsurge in bed-bug infestations in recent years has been due in particular to the rise in travel and the increasing resistance of bedbugs to insecticides.” Bed bugs have long plagued people’s homes; however, this new pesticide-resistant strain means that these aren’t your average pests, but a mutated superbug. Anses described the bed bugs as “a costly nuisance for households in metropolitan France, considering the expense of treatment and the psychological impact.”

Anxieties in the media have also garnered reactions from French authorities. The Deputy Mayor of Paris stated that “no one is safe” from a bedbug infestation, emphasizing the gravity of the issue. He continues by saying, “It’s hell when someone finds themselves confronted with this,” and reminds the public of how this infestation particularly affects low-income households as paying for extermination during this spread is costly.

Despite statements from the Mayor and Anses, Parisians expect more action to be taken from authorities. Lawmaker Mathilde Panot, advocating for the concerned citizens, brought a vial containing bed bugs into parliament showing the prime minister and stating, “Madame Prime Minister, these little insects are spreading despair in our country. Do we need to wait for Matignon (PM’s office) to become infested before you act?” Other lawmakers within the Renaissance French political party have said they would introduce their own bill in December for an anti-bedbug plan. However, this is just a claim and no further information has been disclosed about this. 

In the midst of this unrest, some say the national panic over the bugs is an exaggeration. Transport Minister Clement Beaune assured the public that the bugs spotted on public transportation should not be a big concern. He says it’s important not to “fall into the idea of an acceleration or a resurgence,” and continues to discuss that bedbugs are a common issue in any major city. Since this issue mainly gained attention through apps such as TikTok, the true scope of the issue is unclear. 

As this epidemic continues to unfold in Paris, the possibility of it crossing international borders is still unclear. Despite this uncertainty, it is evident that the bedbug problem is not something underestimated by the French public, and that proactive measures to prevent the infestation remain important in a metropolitan city. 

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About the Contributor
Anna Buchanan, Guest Writer
Anna Buchanan ('25) is thrilled to be a Guest Writer for The Echo. She is interested in writing about current events and pop culture and is looking forward to sharing her writing with others.