Luxembourg MPs vote in favour of gender equality

Luxembourg will in future have a political gender quota. Thanks to the reform that was passed in Parliament on Thursday with the votes of the three coalition parties supported by the left (Déi Lénk), political parties will in future have to put a minimum percentage of women and men on their lists.

The quota for national parliamentary elections will be at 40 percent (24 out of 60 candidates), for European elections it will stand at 50 percent (3 out of 6 candidates) for either gender.

These quotas will not be strictly binding. However, the party funding law will exert pressure, as parties that don’t respect the quotas will be punished through gradual cutbacks of their state funding. The maximum penalty will apply if one party has less than 30 percent (15 out of 60) of candidates of either gender on their election list. In this case, the party in question would merely receive 25 percent of its state funding.

The coming parliamentary elections in 2018 will not yet see the full application of the reform. Only during the following elections (probably in 2023) will the new rule apply fully.

More equality in companies

In addition to the political initiative, Parliament also voted in favour of financial equality of female and male employees. The reform of the “Code de travail” foresees penalties between 251 and 25,000 euros for companies that will not guarantee equal pay for equal work among their employees.

As opposed to the political quotas, it will be more difficult to implement this reform. The implementation and supervision is taken on by the “Inspection du travail” which can only intervene on legal charges or if the concerned parties explicitly allow for the suspension of their professional secrecy.