Health care, Consumer protection, Urban planning, Environmental protection
Paulette Lenert (born on May 31, 1968, in Luxembourg-Ville) is a Luxembourgish lawyer and a politician; she is a member of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party. She currently holds the positions of Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Health, Minister Delegate of Social Security, and Minister of Consumer Protection. She was the Minister of Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs from December 5, 2018 to February 4, 2020.
Paulette Lenert was born in Luxembourg-Ville and spent her childhood in Mondorf.
She completed her classical secondary education at the Athénée de Luxembourg. Later, she earned a degree in private and corporate law from the University of Aix-Marseille III in 1991. In 1992, she furthered her education by obtaining a Master's degree in European Law from the University of London, UK. That same year, she began her legal career by joining the Luxembourg Bar.
By 1994, she shifted her focus to public service, working as a judicial attaché at the Ministry of Justice. Her dedication was quickly recognized, and by 1997 she was appointed as Vice-President and First Judge of the Administrative Court.
In the subsequent years, Paulette took on various roles in government. From 2010 to 2013, she served as a Senior Government Advisor to the Minister Delegate of Solidarity Economy. Concurrently, between 2011 and 2013, she held a board position at ProActif a.s.b.l.
In 2013, Paulette headed the Facilitation Unit for Urban Planning and Environment under the Ministry of State. She soon transitioned to the Ministry of the Civil Service and Administrative Reform as their leading government councilor. By 2014, she had risen to the position of the ministry's general coordinator.
Three years later, in 2017, she was named executive director of the National Institute for Public Administration. However, upon entering higher government roles, she resigned from these positions.
Paulette's political journey continued to rise. On December 5, 2018, she was chosen as the Minister for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs, as well as the Minister for Consumer Protection. This was under a coalition government formed by three parties: the Democratic Party, the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party, and the Green Party.
Her roles expanded on February 4, 2020, when she was appointed Minister of Health and Minister Delegate of Social Security. By January 5, 2022, Paulette had achieved the esteemed position of Deputy Prime Minister.
Throughout her career at the Ministry of Health, the politician has excelled in several areas despite the enormous challenges the world has thrown at her government.
COVID-19 crisis management
She successfully managed the life-saving processes during the pandemic. Paulette led the Ministry of Health during the COVID-19 pandemic, and coronavirus deaths in Luxembourg were lower than in neighboring countries and below the EU average.
Lenert won people's love
Paulette Lenert is no longer the most popular politician in Luxembourg. However, she has held the title for three years and is now in a respectable second place (75%) with a small margin separating her from her party colleague Jean Asselborn (77%). Even in the face of criticism and the gradual fading of the COVID hype, Lenert has held the high ground.
Implemented healthcare reform
She has reformed the health care system for the entire country. Paulette Lenert and her colleagues developed and presented a national health plan that was approved by the Government Council in June 2023.
Professional activities and relationships
The current candidate for Prime Minister began her political career by working in the legal field as a lawyer. In her journey into government, she has shown great resourcefulness and a desire to benefit society.
Legal and judicial roles
In 1992, Paulette Lenert embarked on her professional journey as a lawyer at the Luxembourg Bar. Just two years later, in 1994, she joined the Ministry of Justice as a justice attaché, signifying her transition into public service.
By 1997, her expertise was recognized when she was appointed the first judge at the Administrative Court. This was just the beginning of her tenure there, as she continued to serve in a pivotal role, being the vice-president of the Administrative Court from 1997 to 2010.
Advisory and administrative roles
The subsequent phase of her career, spanning from 2010 to 2013, saw her taking on the role of the first government advisor to the Minister for the Solidarity Economy. From 2011 to 2013, she was a leading figure on the board of directors at Proactif asblt.
In 2013, she delved into urban development, assuming leadership of the town planning and environment facilitation unit attached to the Ministry of State. This was followed by her stint from 2013 to 2014 at the Ministry of Civil Service and Administrative Reform, where she was the first government advisor. Her administrative prowess was further on display in 2014 when she ensured general coordination at the same ministry.
Her role as the director of the National Institute of Public Administration in January 2017 marked another high point in her career, although she would leave this position when transitioning into the government.
Paulette's political ascendancy became evident on December 5, 2018. She became an integral part of the coalition government, which included the Democratic Party (DP), the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP) and The Greens (dei Gréng). In this coalition, she he...
Higher government positions
Her political journey reached another milestone on January 5, 2022. In the wake of Dan Kersch's resignation, Paulette Lenert was appointed the Deputy Prime Minister, reflecting the trust and confidence her colleagues placed in her leadership. In the RTL interview, sh...
After the national legislative elections in October 2023, this politician did not become part of the current administration. However, they continue to be a prominent figure in Luxembourg's political landscape.
Political views and support
Paulette Lenert is affiliated with the LSAP, which stands for the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party. The LSAP identifies with social democratic principles and their platform promotes closer relationships among European nations. Generally, the perspectives of the party members are characterized as center-left.
Currently, the LSAP is the third-largest party in the Chamber of Deputies, occupying 10 seats. This standing has given the LSAP a significant role in the Bettel government II with Paulette Lenert, a prominent member of the LSAP, at the position of Deputy Prime Minister.
Paulette Lenert shared her vision for the nation, emphasizing the need for a holistic approach to societal challenges in a recent interview. Here are the main points:
- Build more public housing so that people have the opportunity to rent inexpensively;
- Simplify bureaucratic procedures to make progress faster;
- Reduce the growing gap between rich and poor through tax reform;
- Emphasize health care so that the system can cope with the growing population;
- Bring more women into politics, quotas are acceptable for this purpose.
These statements are really in line with the moderate left position: help everyone, especially those who need it most.
Lenert admits she doesn't have much in common with politicians from other parties, even the other leftists. But she is willing to work with them for the good of the country.
Criticism of the politician
Paulette Lenert has always acted with restraint and judgment and has never given herself cause for condemnation. The only occasion on which the Minister received a noticeable amount of public criticism was a conflict with the Luxembourg medical community.
Roots of the conflict
Controversy arose when the Ministry of Health, led by Lenert, had previously granted the medical center a license for the MRI machine, following a court decision that deemed the prohibition unconstitutional.
The dispute took place against the backdrop of patients having to wait an excessive 2 months for MRI scans, while the machine already installed at the medical center could have saved valuable time for patients and doctors.
The Association of Doctors and Dentists (AMMD) accused Lenert of "gradually but inevitably getting bogged down in a legal and political imbroglio". For his part, CSV party president Claude Wiseler claimed that Paulette had provided false information about the ministry's agreement with the medical center.
In the end, however, Paulette said she wouldn't stop the center's work to avoid harming patients, and the agreement was concluded. She considers the story to be the biggest mistake of her parliamentary term and was surprised at how quickly people stopped talking about it after it passed.
Paulette Lenert is very attached to her dog, Schmit, and loves to take him for long walks in the countryside. She has several favorite hiking trails, one of which is along the Moselle River. Paulette tries to walk at least once a day, for example early in the morning in the forest.
Paulette Lenert is divorced. Her two daughters grew up and moved abroad.
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We took photos from these sources: Gouvernement.lu, Copyright: SIP / Yves Kortum