Letter of solidarity to the organizers of the demonstration against the “Heescheverbuet”

The OGBL declares its full solidarity with the demonstration that will take place on Monday, January 29, 2024, in the city of Luxembourg, in favor of the withdrawal of the municipal decree that prohibits simple begging on the territory of the city. The OGBL welcomes the initiative of the youth organizations of the left parties (JSL, Jonk Gréng, Jonk Lénk).

As the OGBL has already stated, the ban on begging is in no way justifiable. Instead of fighting poverty, which was declared a top priority at the beginning of the negotiations for the new government program, the CSV and DP prefer to fight the poor.

By banning simple begging, the Luxembourg city college of alderman and the government are attacking the most vulnerable people who are in the most precarious situations, especially during the winter months.

Furthermore, neither the city college of alderman nor the government seem to be bothered by the clear and unanimous assertion of the lack of a legal basis and the questioning of the constitutionality of the said regulation, whether it’s the Luxembourg district attorney Georges Oswald or the attorney general Martine Solovieff. By upholding their decision, the city college of alderman and the government show an almost unbelievable nonchalance towards the elementary principles of the rule of law.

As a result, police officers who have to implement the new regulation are in the difficult position of having to issue fines on the basis of a legal text whose legality is, to say the least, dubious. In any case, the wording of the article of the regulation, which indiscriminately targets all forms of begging, including situations of extreme need that have nothing to do with organized begging, clearly diverts resources from other missions of the Grand Ducal Police, starting with the fight against crime.

For all these reasons, the OGBL supports the demand of the organizers of the demonstration against the “Heescheverbuet” to withdraw the regulation as soon as possible.

The OGBL also calls for a real action plan to combat poverty, which must include in particular the following elements:

  • structural increase of the social minimum wage, REVIS and income for the severely disabled.
  • automatic adjustment of the cost-of-living benefit to increases in the cost of living and broadening of the number of recipients.
  • universal access to health care.
  • widespread implementation of immediate direct payment of health care costs by the CNS.
  • guaranteed access to housing, with effective rent ceilings and a major public housing offensive.