6 2 mins 9 yrs

Last week, both Leroy Merlin and Castorama, two home improvement chains, were ordered by a court to stop opening their stores in the Paris area on Sundays or face a fine of 120,000 euros ($162,000) per shop and per day.

But on Sunday, they opened anyway amid anger among employees and customers.

“I’m outraged by the court decision: All of a sudden, I risk ending up without a salary, which threatens my studies,” said Eleanor Leloup, a 24-year-old chiropractic student who works every weekend at one of the affected Leroy Merlin stores in Ivry-sur-Seine, next to Paris.

I wouldn’t worry about it love. You’ll be lucky to have a job when the government ‘strengthens’ the minimum wage above your pay grade.

Benoit Hamon, Consumer Affairs Minister, said Saturday it was “unacceptable that a brand does not implement a judicial decision.”

In the end, it comes down to whether or not a property owner can peacefully use and dispose of their supposed property. What’s unacceptable is the State’s presumption that it can, in effect, co-opt someone’s property and dictate what they can do with it. Yes, I wholeheartedly support and endorse retailers opening when they like without any regard for impertinent bureaucracy.

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  1. We actually have Sunday closing laws in a major, affluent suburb in New Jersey


    Many of the local residents very much like these laws. They enjoy peaceful Sundays, with little traffic on the highways, and the stores seem to prosper just fine anyway.

    The right of a store to make money must be balanced against the right of the community to peace and quiet.

    I’d tend to side with the store, but there are two sides to this matter.

  2. I wholeheartedly support and endorse retailers opening when they like without any regard for impertinent bureaucracy.

    So you would be fine with an all-hours pub next door which kept you awake at night? I think not.

  3. There are multiple interests at play here

    The store owner and the employees who see economic opportunity

    The locals who may want a quiet Sunday

    The employees who may not want to be forced by the boss to work on a Sunday.

    All these must be weighed.

    Money is a mighty important thing, but it is not the only thing.

  4. Pete

    Should the immediate residents who live right by a pub / nightclub / store have any say at all on the hours that the business can keep, or the amount of noise that they are allowed to produce?

    Of course this is is not an academic question in built up areas like London or NYC, etc.

    Does anyone other than the business owner have any voice, and if so, how is that voice to be heard effectively? By what procedure, governed by whom?

  5. EP – this

    Peter, Phantom –

    It depends. No-one has the right to floods someone’s home around the clock with light and noise. It’s both a trespass and a form of pollution and property rights will come into play.

    But flipping it around, what if a pub has been operating long hours for years in relative isolation, without bothering anyone, and then you buy a plot and build a home next door to it; do you then have the right to restrict the pub? I’d say it was there first and you should have done your homework.

    Why do you ask about a pub, most of which are no problem, instead of say a road, railway or airport, the building and operating of which are far more problematic for homeowners?

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