The City is committed to guaranteeing equal opportunities in all areas of life. It recognises the different needs of men and women, and boys and girls, and takes them into account in its public services and the cultural, sporting and recreational activities it offers, to provide an excellent quality of life for all of its residents.
On 23 March 2009, the City of Luxembourg signed the European Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life. As a signatory, the City has undertaken to implement the commitments defined in the Charter's thirty articles, within its territory.
To ensure proper implementation, the City has agreed to develop a municipal action plan that defines its priorities, actions and necessary resources. The City has also agreed to work with the institutions and organisations in its territory to promote equality and diversity between women and men, with all the advantages and challenges this brings.
The municipal action plan for equal opportunities is the tool for implementing the municipal gender equality policy. It was developed based on the 4-Step Gender Mainstreaming methodology, which entails:
- Analysing the initial situation;
- Setting objectives to be achieved over a four-year period to improve the initial situation;
- Defining actions to achieve the objectives, as well as indicators, deadlines and the choice of partners for implementation;
- Assessing progress against the indicators that have been defined.
2019–2022 action plan
The City has been committed to promoting gender equality since the year 2000. With the backing of the municipal council, the equal opportunities officer – a position created in 2006 – ensures that there is a structured, sustainable equality policy. This foundation was further strengthened on 23 March 2009 when the City signed the European Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life. Since then, the City has focused its commitment on the six principles of the Charter:
- Equality of women and men is a fundamental right.
- To ensure the equality of women and men, multiple discriminations and disadvantages must be addressed.
- The balanced participation of women and men in decision-making is a prerequisite of a democratic society.
- Eliminating gender stereotypes is fundamental to achieving equality of women and men.
- Integrating the gender perspective into all activities of local and regional government is necessary to advance equality of women and men.
- Properly resourced action plans and programmes are necessary tools to advance equality of women and men.
2015–2018 action plan
Priorities in terms of equality
The 2015–2018 action plan sets out the priorities of the municipal equality policy. It has 5 main sections covering 19 articles of the European Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life developed by the Council of European Municipalities and Regions:
- Service provider: actions in relation to the quality of the service rendered, and adaptation of the service to the specific needs and interests of men and women
- Planning and sustainable development: social, environmental and economic responsibility of the City of Luxembourg in its role as developer of urban spaces; actions relating to the adaptation of public spaces to the needs of women and men and to the promotion of the balanced participation of women and men in the development of society
- Role of employer: actions aimed at achieving gender equality in-house, and at incorporating gender equality policies directly in human-resources management practices
- Governance: actions relating to decision-making, organisation and communication in line with the policy on gender equality
- General framework: implementing the policy on gender equality should be based on a detailed analysis of the situation, and should be part of a broader framework for tackling multiple forms of discrimination
In addition to these priority areas, there is the overarching aspect of governance, which includes the structural and communication measures required for the effective implementation of a gender equality policy.
Each year, the progress of the action plan is evaluated and documented in an annual report. The action plan is then adjusted in light of the evaluation results and changes in society.
Anne Beffort Prize
Every year since 2003, the College of the Mayor and Aldermen of Luxembourg City, on the recommendation of the Advisory committee for equality opportunities, awards the Anne Beffort Prize, named after the Luxembourg's first female professor and co-founder of the Lycée de jeunes filles in Luxembourg City.
The €3,000 prize is given to an individual, non-profit organisation, group or institution working to promote gender equality in Luxembourg City.
Past Anne Beffort Prize winners
2022 – IMS – Inspiring More Sustainability
In awarding the 2022 Anne Beffort Prize to IMS – Inspiring More Sustainability, an independent, apolitical, non-profit organization, the City was keen to honour the this organisation's commitment to gender equality and LGBTQ+ rights, among its many missions. Over the years, this organisation has become a national leader in corporate social responsibility. Thanks to its collaborative approach, IMS manages to initiate pragmatic, effective and sustainable solutions to the real problems that face our society, giving companies and institutions the tools needed to develop projects with a positive social impact as part of their corporate social responsibility initiatives.
2021 – Cigale LGBTIQ+ Centre
In awarding the Anne Beffort Prize 2021 to the Cigale LGBTIQ+ Centre, the College of Aldermen wished to acknowledge this association's tireless commitment and the valuable work it carries out in Luxembourg City to advance equal rights for the LGBTQ+ community, which continues to face discrimination and prejudice in all areas of daily life.
2020 – ANIL
In awarding the 2020 Anne Beffort Prize to the ANIL, the College of Aldermen wishes to acknowledge the amazing work and unwavering dedication of nursing staff during the COVID-19 pandemic, and highlight the importance of healthcare workers in general. We as a society do not express near enough appreciation for nurses, most of whom are women. This prize was therefore awarded to the ANIL in order raise public awareness of the profession, and to given our female and male nurses the recognition they so thoroughly deserve.
2019 – Luxembourg City Conservatoire
For its boys' dance class in its performing arts section. The City awarded the Anne Beffort Prize to the Luxembourg City Conservatoire for its efforts to promote equal opportunities in the cultural sphere. This class offers real encouragement to boys who want to dance, and has even opened the door for several to study dance abroad.
2018 – Voix de jeunes femmes
"Voix de jeunes femmes" (The Voice of Young Women) is a group for young men and women aged 16 to 30. It was created to involve young people in the fight against sexism and to condemn the inequality that affects young people. The City recognised the association's commitment to promoting equal opportunities, equal rights and the equal treatment of men and women.
2017 – Colette Flesch
The City wished to acknowledge Ms Flesch's leading role as a politician in promoting Luxembourg City, the Grand Duchy and Europe; she was the first female mayor of the capital in 1970, at a time when women were still somewhat rare in politics; she was a member of the Chamber of Deputies in the 1960s, 1980s and 2000s, and served as Deputy Prime Minister under the Werner government from 1980 to 1984. In addition, she was a member of the European Parliament and Director-General of the European Commission, in the areas of culture, communication, sport and translation.
2016 – Planning Familial
In recognition of its health cafés drop-in programme for female refugees and women seeking international protection. The association is committed to combating violence against female refugees and to promoting their integration.
2015 – ALUPSE
ALUPSE, the Luxembourg association for social paediatrics, was founded in 1984 to reflect and act on child abuse issues in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. During her paediatrics studies, with ALUPSE and her team, Dr Idoya Perez focused on researching and creating structures for learning about mother–child attachment, especially in situations where women find themselves isolated, suffering from psychiatric illnesses, experiencing hardship or victims of violence, with the aim of establishing a social approach to paediatrics in Luxembourg.
2014 – Girls in Tech Luxembourg
Girls in Tech Luxembourg, a youthful and dynamic association set up in January 2014, provides women with training in digital skills. Allowing them to gain a command of new technologies and of different tools opens doors to job offers published in that domain. In addition, digital skills are indispensable in the world of work. Thus, the association supports women at a range of levels, helping them to remain competitive in the job market, gain self-confidence in a field with which they are sometimes not too familiar, develop networks and acquire IT skills.
2013 – Planning Familial Luxembourg
In awarding the 2013 Anne Beffort Prize to Planning Familial Luxembourg, the City wished to acknowledge the association's commitment to gender equality in the health sector.
2012 – Femmes en détresse
The City wished to acknowledge the association's commitment to a better balance between work and home life, through their "Krank Kanner Doheem" service, which offers home care for sick children by qualified staff. This service allows both parents to go to work, safe in the knowledge that their sick child is in good hands and thus actively helps improve working conditions for working women.
2011 – Sport a Fräizäit Zéisséng
Since its creation in 1984, SaF has worked tirelessly for gender equality through a series of initiatives. In 1998, for example, Gaston Zangerlé, an SaF member, paid homage to Elsy Jacobs, the world women's cycling champion, in his book "Elsy Jacobs, la grande-duchesse de la petite reine" (Elsy Jacobs, Grand Duchess of the Little Queen). Three years later, SaF organised its first "Elsy Jacobs Bike Ride" for touring cyclists, which has since become extremely popular and is now traditionally held every year on 1 May in Garnich, Elsy's birthplace. In 2008, the non-profit association set up an international women's cycling race.
In addition, in 2010, SaF introduced the "Mérite Elsy Jacobs" prize for the promotion of women's sport, which is awarded to individuals who are particularly committed to encouraging women's sport. Other SaF events, including a round table session on the challenges faced by women cyclists and the differences between cycling for women and men, and the "City Trophy Elsy Jacobs", organised for the first time in Luxembourg City, were a resounding success in 2011.
2010 – Josiane Kartheiser
Journalist and author of fifteen books of poems, play scripts, short stories, a humorous and satirical tourist book about the City of Luxembourg and even a children's book, Josiane Kartheiser started to write and publish at a time when not many female authors were published. Kartheiser's work reflects a very fine and sensitive analysis of Luxembourg society in general, and of the place of women, their struggle, and their efforts to gain emancipation and to find their place in all areas of life.
2009 – Fédération des femmes cheffes d'entreprise au Luxembourg (FFCEL)
This non-profit association, founded in 2004, now includes over 100 female business leaders from across a wide range of sectors. Its purpose is to bring together female business leaders with a view to providing them with support, training and information, improving their visibility, offering them local and international business opportunities, and developing a sense of solidarity and mutual support. It also undertakes initiatives to raise public awareness of female business leaders and to encourage more women to pursue careers in that direction. It also undertakes actions to inform the public about women leaders and to encourage more women to pursue careers in this area.
2008 – Annette Schwall-Lacroix
A lawyer committed to raising awareness of the issue of the emancipation of women in Luxembourg, through her writings on the achievements of Aline Mayrisch in the field of women's rights.
2007 – Marja-Leena Junker
Actress, director and artistic director of the Théâtre du Centaure, recognised for her commitment to women's issues in her theatrical work and for the creation of a contemporary repertoire of works that touch on different aspects of women's lives to encourage reflection, help raise awareness and sometimes also inform or give a voice to those who have never had one.
2006 – Cid-Femmes
For its educational initiatives and activities, such as the creation of a public library in the city with some 12,400 documents showcasing the lives and achievements of those women who have influenced the course of European and world history, and whose efforts deserve to be remembered by future generations. Other initiatives promoted by the association include the "Mädchenfreundlicher Bücherkoffer", and "KeK – Kinder entdecken Künstlerinnen". Cid-Femmes has also developed a range of initiatives aimed at raising social awareness of gender issues and championing a more tolerant, more equal society. One of these initiatives is the association's "Girls' Day", which is meant shows that men and women can have the same career path, regardless of their profession.
2005 – Femmes en détresse
For its initiative "Neen – géint d'Gewalt" ("No to Violence"). Produced in collaboration with the school commissions and implemented in several schools across Luxembourg City, this project included two components: prevention workshops run in primary schools, and sessions with children exposed to domestic violence. Both teachers and children were involved.
2003 – Inter-Actions Faubourgs
For its "Schläifmillen" project aimed at getting unemployed young people back on the job market, which helped to get many unemployed young women enrolled in a re-employment scheme at an electronic waste treatment workshop and find a job afterwards.