Four local non-profit organisations, Richtung22 asbl, Eran, Eraus... An Elo? asbl, Second Chance asbl and RISE asbl, have announced that they are organising a protest against the opening of a new prison in Sanem on Wednesday 30 November 2022 at 14:00.
Next Wednesday will see the inauguration of the new prison in Sanem (Centre pénitentiaire d'Uerschterhaff - CPU). The prison will be able to accommodate 400 prisoners and is expected to be fully operational in January 2023.
The aforementioned non-profits argued in a statement that, rather than being an achievement, this new prison "shows that Luxembourg systematically hides its problems out of sight instead of dealing with them at the root".
Eran, Eraus... An Elo? President Christian Richartz stated: "In Luxembourg, the majority of people are in prison for minor offences, simple theft and drug-related offences. In addition, almost half of those imprisoned are in pre-trial detention - locked up without being condemned".
The four non-profits have joined forces to hold a demonstration against "the opening of a new place of deprivation of liberty and the maintenance of Luxembourg's prison policy", according to the statement. The organisers explained that Luxembourg already has the highest rate of people in pre-trial detention in Europe and that, unlike neighbouring countries, it has no legal time limit for pre-trial detention, adding that the judicial system is "particularly slow".
Gabriel.le Taillefert from Richtung22 added: "The incarceration rate is not linked to the delinquency rate, it's a question of political will. The current coalition creates a total of 492 places in places of deprivation of liberty, and there is no audible opposition?"
The non-profits also argued that the consequences of imprisonment are serious, with people finding themselves in a "situation of desocialisation, losing their work, their housing, their sexuality, their dignity, the feeling of having a usefulness and a place in society".
Ada Günther of Richtung22 concluded: "The incarceration system is a relic of a time when we still believed that isolation from society led to religious enlightenment and character reformation. Today we have a different vision of the world - why don't we have other ways to reintegrate people into society?"
The protest will take place outside the prison, at 9 Rue Uerschterhaff L-4498 Sanem, on Wednesday 30 November 2022 at 14:00.