Pre-session working group

Fortieth and forty-first sessions

16-20 July 2007

List of issues and questions with regard to the consideration of periodic reports


The pre-session working group examined the fifth periodic report of Luxembourg (CEDAW/C/LUX/5).

General matters, Constitution, laws and reservations

1.Please provide information on the process of preparing the report: Please indicate, in particular, whether consultations were held with non-governmental organizations and women’s groups and whether it was presented to Parliament or any designated high-level authority.

2. In its previous concluding comments, the Committee expressed its concern about Luxembourg’s reservations to articles 7 and 16(1) (g) of the Convention (A/58/38 (Part 1), para. 300). After the adoption of the Law of 23 December 2005 on the naming of children, please provide information about a timetable for withdrawal of the reservation to article 16(1) (g) (para. 26). Please also indicate what efforts are taking place, including a timetable, to withdraw the reservation to article 7.

3.The report states that the revision of article 11 of the Constitution, which is intended to include gender equality in the text of the Constitution, has been underway since 1999 (para. 15). The report further states that the new text will be put before the Chamber of Deputies shortly. Please indicate the reasons for the long delay in passing the law and what obstacles, if any, the bill is now likely to face before the Chamber of Deputies.

4.Please provide further information on the court cases mentioned in paragraph 6 of the report regarding articles 11 and 16 of the Convention. Please state when the decisions were made and provide details of the reasoning of the courts.

5.Please provide information on any training programmes on the Convention and the Optional Protocol that are taking place or have been undertaken for Government officials, the police, judges and prosecutors and their impact. Please indicate whether such training is systematic and/or a mandatory requirement.

Temporary special measures

6.The report provides little information on temporary special measures, covered under article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention. Please provide updated information on whether temporary special measures, including the use of quotas or incentives, are in place to increase the number of women and girls in all sectors and the nature and impact of these measures in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1 of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation 25.

Stereotypes and education

7.In its previous concluding comments, the Committee was concerned about the persistence of stereotypical attitudes which threatened to impede women’s enjoyment of their rights (A/58/38 (Part 1), para. 308). The report gives a few examples of efforts on the part of Government to eliminate such attitudes, but does not indicate whether a comprehensive strategy exists to combat stereotypes which targets both men and women. Please provide this information, and also elaborate on whether an assessment of the impact of existing measures has been undertaken, and if so, what lessons have been learned and how these have informed policy development.

8.The report notes that the Ministry for the Advancement of Women has placed particular emphasis on sensitizing teachers and promoting a gender-differentiated approach to teaching (para. 74). Please provide details on the nature, scope and impact of these programmes.

9.The report notes that girls and boys make different educational choices that are influenced by occupational stereotypes (para. 151). Please describe what measures and time-bound targets the Government has in place for increasing the number of female students in non-traditional fields, and progress made towards their achievement in the last five years.

10.The Committee on the Rights of the Child noted that a large number of foreign children (more than 40 per cent of the school population) are often disadvantaged by the educational programme and teaching methods in Luxembourg, including language problems (CRC/C/15/Add.250, para. 50). Please provide an analysis of the situation of immigrant and foreign girls, including girl children of asylum seekers, in education, as well as the efforts made to ensure that immigrant children are integrated into the educational sector (para. 184) and the impact of such efforts.

Violence against women

11.With the exception of domestic violence, the report does not provide any information on violence against women, including sexual violence. Please provide updated data on the prevalence of, and measures taken to prevent and combat all forms of violence against women, in accordance with the Committee’s general recommendation 19. This should include information on the support services that are available to women who are victims of violence, and the number of prosecutions and the sentences imposed against perpetrators. Please also indicate whether a population-based survey on violence against women has been conducted, and any results of such a survey.

Trafficking and exploitation of prostitution

12.The Committee in its previous concluding comments recommended the adoption of comprehensive policies to combat trafficking in women and girls (A/58/38 (Part 1), para. 313). Please provide details on the steps the Government has taken to respond to this recommendation, and in particular provide information about statistical data of women trafficked into Luxembourg, of traffickers prosecuted and punished, and information about the support services and protection available to trafficked women, including permits to stay in the country.

13.Please provide details about the impact of the Government’s decision to no longer issue visas or permits to persons from non-European Union countries to work as cabaret artists as part of its efforts to combat human trafficking (para. 90).

Political participation

14.The representation of women remains low in Government, Parliament, municipal councils and other public bodies despite the Committee’s previous recommendation that the State party develop further measures to increase women’s role in decision-making in all spheres (A/58/38 (Part 1), para. 311). What measures are being undertaken to realize women’s full and equal participation in such bodies, including the use of temporary special measures in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendations 23 and 25?


15.The Committee in its previous concluding comments was concerned about ongoing discrepancies in salaries and wages between women and men for work of equal value, and recommended the adoption of policies to eradicate the pay discrimination against women (A/58/38 (Part 1), paras. 314 and 315). Please provide information on the impact of the measures described in the report designed to eradicate the wage gap between women and men, including the effect of the Law of 30 June 2004.

16.The report provides limited information about trends, since the last report, in women’s share in various occupations, and levels, of the labour market. Please provide such an overview, and also disaggregate all the information by ethnicity where appropriate, and age groups of women.

17.The report describes the Law of 19 May 2003 which introduced measures to promote the reconciliation of family and working life (para. 18). However, the record on parental leave shows that the number of mothers taking leave is consistently higher than that of fathers (para. 87). What concrete measures, in addition to the legislative changes discussed in the report, does the Government intend to take to encourage better sharing of work and family responsibilities between men and women?

18.The statistics in the report indicate that women have higher educational achievements than men and exceed men in general enrolment at tertiary level. What strategies has the Government put in place or considered to ensure that young women seek and retain jobs commensurate with their academic achievements?


19.The report states that sex education is no longer considered as the exclusive preserve of specialized professionals (para. 277). It does not however state what specific measures have been taken to increase women’s access to reproductive and sexual health services and family planning in order to avoid unwanted pregnancies and women’s recourse to illegal abortion. Please provide this information.

20.The report notes that there has been a significant increase in mortality rates from lung cancer among women (paras. 243 and 245). The report further states the lung cancer deaths among women have increased by more than 47 per cent since 1980, and that it is feared that these rates will grow further (para. 261). Also, the report indicates that at 18 years of age, there is a significant increase in the number of female smokers as compared to males (para. 264). Please indicate what the Government is doing to target women and girls in its antismoking campaigns and to address the increasing incidence of lung cancer amongst women.

Women in vulnerable situations

21.Please describe the situation of foreign women, and in particular women from outside the European Union, in Luxembourg. This should include a discussion of measures in place to eliminate discrimination and achieve equality for foreign women and girls in areas such as education, health, employment and participation in public life. Please also indicate the impact of such measures, as well as any temporary special measures.

22.The report provides little information about the situation of older women. Please give an overview of their situation, in particular their economic well-being. In this regard, indicate the impact of women’s limited number of years in paid employment due to family and childcare responsibilities in regard to pension rights, social security and health coverage, and measures in place to counteract any negative impact.

23.Please provide information and data about the situation of disabled women and girls, including the financial, medical and other support provided to ensure the protection of their rights.

Optional Protocol

24.Please provide information about the steps taken to make widely known the Optional Protocol which Luxembourg ratified in 2003.