Several children lost one or both parents in the Paris attacks. These orphans of terror may now be adopted by the state of France, becoming pupilles de la nation.
Laurence Rossingol, the junior minister of family affairs, has called on the 50 children who have lost parents in the Paris attacks to apply for this legal status. The law assists children (link in French) whose parents were killed by the enemy, or died of wounds or disease sustained or aggravated as a result of war, or have been affected by a terrorist incident.
It dates back to World War I, where around a million orphaned children (link in French) were given a specific legal status that guarantees financial aid and additional protection from the government.
The law also helps parents unable to meet their familial obligations as a result of injury or diseases incurred by war. The government provides grants for basic necessities, pays for tuition fees, and covers medical care until the child turns 21. Some jobs in the public service are reserved for the “wards of France” (link in French). The amount of aid each ward receives is specific to their situation, which is decided by the ministry of veterans and war victims.
Sadly, some 33 children have become wards this year, including the children of the victims of the attack against Charlie Hebdo in January.