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Italian school bans heels over ‘earthquake fears’

An secondary school in Italy's Abruzzo region has found the perfect excuse to change it's policy on footwear – banning high heels, flip-flops and platform shoes because of the area's high seismic risk.

Italian school bans heels over 'earthquake fears'
An Italian school has banned heels above four centimeters citing safety concerns. Photo: Massimiliano Gatti /Flickr

“The directive is not the fruit of some overly puritanical imagination, but comes down to the need to educate students about safety, especially in an area of high seismic activity.” Anna Amanzi, headmistress of L'Instituto Technico Industriale in Avezzano told Ansa.

Perhaps unsurprisingly in a country famed for its footwear, not everybody was convinced about the new draconian measures, which will see all heels over four centimeters in height outlawed at the school in L'Aquila province.

Teachers said they disagreed with the decision but would follow reluctantly follow new guidelines. 

“They should think about more serious issues,” said one student. “Like how to heat the school properly.”

In spite of the new prescriptive rules on footwear not going down well with students and staff, the earthquake risk in the area is very real.

The region of L'Aquila still bears the scars of a series of quakes that struck in 2009, killing 286 people across the province.

In 1915, a massive earthquake devastated the town of Avezzano killing 30,000 people. 

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ITALY

Italy’s Renzi wants ex-ECB boss Draghi to become prime minister: report

Ex-PM Matteo Renzi would like to see former European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi become prime minister of Italy, a party source told Reuters on Sunday.

Italy's Renzi wants ex-ECB boss Draghi to become prime minister: report
Matteo Renzi. Image: Andreas Solaro/ POOL / AFP

“I would say that is one of our proposals,” confirmed the source, who declined to be named.

The Italian government collapsed last week when PM Giuseppe Conte resigned. The former coalition allies are currently trying to come to an agreement and sort out their differences.

The centre-left government had been in turmoil ever since former premier Matteo Renzi withdrew his Italia Viva party earlier this month, a move that forced Conte to step down this week.

During the past year, Renzi frequently criticised Conte’s management of the pandemic and economic crisis.

Italy’s La Stampa newspaper also reported on Sunday that President Sergio Mattarella was considering Draghi for the prime ministerial role. However, Mattarella’s office promptly denied this, saying there had been no contact between them.

So far, there has been no comment from Draghi, who hasn't been seen much in the public eye since 2019.


Italy's president, Sergio Mattarella, gave ruling parties more time on Friday to form a new government, after the resignation of Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte. 

Coalition parties Italia Viva, the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) and anti-establishment 5-Star Movement must come to an agreement to allow the government to heal. 

Renzi, a former prime minister himself, has pubilcly stated that he does not want to talk about who should lead the next government at this stage, reasoning that the parties need to agree on a way forward first.

“Any effort today to fuel a discussion about Draghi is offensive to Draghi and above all to the president of the republic,” Renzi said in an interview published on Sunday with Corriere della Sera.

A senior Italia Viva lawmaker also told Reuters that “If the president gives a mandate to Draghi, we would certainly support this”. 

Renzi, whose party is not even registering three percent support in opinion polls, quit the coalition over Conte’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and his plans for spending more than 200 billion euros from a European Union fund to help Italy’s damaged economy.

READ ALSO: Why do Italy's governments collapse so often?

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