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Carole Reckinger - Being the voice of the people we support

Sunday 6 October 2019

For a few months now, Carole Reckinger has been in charge of Caritas Luxembourg's social and political watch.

What is the place of social and political watch in the work of an organisation like Caritas Luxembourg?

It is an essential part of our work because an organization that helps people in difficulty on a daily basis icannot simply treat wounds. On the contrary, it must act to prevent distress situations and so that people do not need to seek its help. It must be able to propose solutions to improve people's lives in a sustainable way. Hence the importance of analysing the factors that lead to precariousness.

What are the main themes that interest you most?

It is of course all about poverty and inequality in our society. For example, we are closely monitoring everything concerning REVIS, housing, but also the climate, the social impact of which is also beginning to be felt in Luxembourg.

How do you act?

Our action is carried out at several levels. We closely track Luxembourg and European policy. We work therefore in networks and are part of several working groups, both at the level of the Luxembourg government and at the level of Europe. This allows us to react quickly.

We also draft positions and lobby public authorities to change the situation.

At the same time, we are trying to raise awareness among the general public and stimulate public debate on the themes of precariousness. That is why we publish the Sozialalmanach every year.

On what do you base your action?

Our main source is the people we accompany in our various structures, whether in social grocery stores, emergency structures for the homeless or refugee shelters. Through our social workers on the field, we identify the difficulties they face in living a dignified life and bring their voices to the public authorities. Those we help generally have difficulty making their voices heard. Hence the importance for Caritas Luxembourg to be the voice of all those people who unfortunately do not have a voice. At the same time, the fact that we are building our political work on the real experiences of the people we support is a confirmation of our action.

Is it difficult to succeed Robert Urbé?

Robert Urbé is irreplaceable. I hope to be able to learn a lot more from him and his long experience. However, it will be very difficult to reach the same level and accomplish as much as he did.

What accents do you want to put in your work?

I am particularly concerned about using my experience of North-South relations to bring a new perspective to the issue of poverty and inequality in Luxembourg. I am firmly convinced that many of the problems we face in Luxembourg must be analysed and understood in a broader context. I also think that many issues are linked to each other, such as global warming and poverty, the connections are not always obvious, nor are they yet analysed. Understanding these links is important if effective solutions are to be found.

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