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A petition is a request filed by an individual or a group of individuals with the Chamber of Deputies for the purpose of obtaining a decision in favour of a collective interest they are defending.
The right to petition is one of the fundamental rights of all citizens. It is stated in the Luxembourg Constitution.
There are 2 types of petitions:
- ordinary petitions: on paper;
- public petitions: online or on paper.
The differences between a public petition and an ordinary petition are that with the ordinary petition:
- it is not possible to collect electronic signatures; and
- a public debate is not foreseen.
Who is concerned
Every citizen has the right to petition the Chamber of Deputies.
However, in order to submit a request for a public petition, the applicant, whether resident or not, must :
- be at least 15 years old;
- be listed in the National Register of Natural Persons (RNPP): i.e. have a 13-digit national identification number (matricule).
An association may also submit a public petition.
How to proceed
Filing an ordinary petition
The citizen or group of citizens sends an ordinary petition in writing to the President of the Chamber of Deputies. The petition can be submitted in Luxembourgish, German or French.
The petitioner may:
- make an appointment with the Chamber of Deputies in advance and deliver the petition in person;
- send the petition by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org;
- send the petition by post to the following address:
Au Président de la Chambre des Députés
23, rue du Marché-aux-Herbes
The/each petitioner must:
- sign the petition; and
- indicate their full name and residence in legible manner.
Processing of an ordinary petition
The ordinary petition is examined by the Committee on Petitions, which can:
- request a statement from the competent minister;
- forward the petition to another committee;
- request the opinion of another committee;
- hear the petitioner(s) during one of its meetings;
- invite any body or expert concerned by the petition;
- make on-site visits as part of the petition investigation.
The petitioner is informed by post of the procedures undertaken by the Committee on Petitions.
Filing a public petition
The petition must be submitted by way of:
- the electronic form; or
- the paper form.
A public petition must meet the following eligibility criteria:
- be of general and national interest; have a purpose that serves all citizens. Individual interests are precluded;
- respect ethical principles; no content of a violent, abusive, racist, homophobic, etc. nature;
- not concern an issue for which a petition has already been filed within the last 12 months.
Review of a public petition
The Committee on Petitions will examine the request. If the Committee on Petitions gives a positive opinion, the Conference of Presidents then agrees on whether to publish the petition or not on the website of the Chamber of Deputies.
If the petition does not meet the eligibility criteria, the request is rejected.
If the request is not precise enough, the Committee on Petitions can ask the petitioner for further explanations. The petitioner has one month to respond to their request. A failure to provide a response will result in the rejection of the petition request.
Where a request is deemed non-admissible, the petition is treated as an ordinary petition.
Processing of a public petition
Admissible public petitions are published and opened for signature on the website of the Chamber of Deputies. The petitioner has 42 days to gather:
- electronic signatures; and/or
- signatures in paper format using the form made available to the petitioner by the Parliamentary Administration.
At the same time, a discussion forum concerning the petition is opened on the Chamber of Deputies website.
As soon as the public petition has gathered 4,500 signatures, a public debate is held in the presence of:
- a maximum of 6 petitioners; and
- the competent minister.
The petition request is treated as an ordinary petition when:
- its public nature is not recognised; or
- the threshold of 4,500 signatures is not reached, on condition that the petitioner approves. This approval must be given within one month from the request of the Committee on Petitions.
Participation in a public petition
A public petition can be signed by any person who is:
- at least 15 years old;
- registered in the RNPP.
The Parliamentary Administration is authorised to check the identity of signatories in the RNPP.
Signing a petition electronically
Petitions can be signed using the online form provided by the Chamber of Deputies.
The full name and address of the signatory are published on the Chamber of Deputies website, unless the signatory decides otherwise. This choice can be made when signing the petition.
The information provided by the signatories is kept on an electronic medium until the administrative procedure is closed.
Signing a petition on paper
Petitions can be signed using the paper form provided by the Parliamentary Administration. This form specifies:
- the petition's number and title;
- the deadline for submitting the form.
Public access to pending petitions
There, the public can consult:
- a list of past and current petitions;
- meeting minutes;
- correspondence relating to the investigation of a petition, if it is not of a confidential nature.