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The information contained on this page represents the situation as of 1 January 2014 and is a summary of the country report produced by the country expert from the network. The summary can be downloaded here as well.

Tania Hoffmann

Country context

The Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg is characterized by cultural diversity and the common use of several languages. Its population is quite homogeneous the vast majority of foreigners being European Union citizens, most of which are of catholic religion.

Main principles and definitions

Articles 454 to 457 of the Penal Code provide some legal tools for protection against discrimination. Article 454 of this code, as amended by the law of 28 November 2006, defines discrimination as “Any difference of treatment applied to natural persons on grounds of their racial or ethnic origin, skin colour, sex, sexual orientation, family situation, age, state of health, disability, customs, political or philosophical opinions, trade union activities, their membership, actual or supposed, of an ethnic group, nationality, race or specific religion.”

Enforcing the law

A person may act alone and lodge a criminal complaint in court. The state prosecutor will, however, decide if the case is worthwhile proceeding with.

Main legislation

Luxembourg has signed and ratified the European Convention on Human Rights, Article 14 of which prohibiting discrimination on any ground such as sex, race, colour, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, association with a national minority, property, birth or other status. This article is directly applicable to court cases examined under Luxembourg law. Protocol 12 on discrimination has also been ratified.

Material scope

As far as penal law is concerned, the amended article 455 of the Penal Code is applicable to discrimination in relation to:

  • the refusal to supply or allow enjoyment of goods;
  • the refusal to supply a service;
  • the restriction of the supply of goods or services on grounds of ethnic or racial discrimination or the exercising of any other form of discrimination at the time of supply;
  • the indication in any advertisement of the intention to refuse goods or services or to practise discrimination at the time of supplying goods and services;
  • the restriction of the normal exercise of any economic activity;
  • the refusal to employ an individual, the sanctioning or dismissal of a person;
  • the subjection of access to work, training or working conditions or the membership of, and involvement in, an organisation of workers or employers to a discriminatory condition.

Equality bodies

The laws of 28 and 29 November 2006 have created a Centre for Equality of Treatment, competent also for discrimination cases relating to the public sector.

Go to the European Commission - Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities This initiative is financed by the EC Programme Progress. But the views expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect the official views of the EU institutions.