Switzerland - Domestic workers protected by first sectoral contract - February 11, 2011

After three years of debate fuelled by the Unia union jointly with other affiliates of the Swiss Federation of Trade Unions (SGB/USS), on 1 January 2011 the first-ever country-wide standard work contract (Normalarbeitsvertrag or NAV) came into force, laying down minimum wages and working conditions for domestic workers. The NAV is a legal minimum wage provision for sectors without collectively agreed provisions. The compulsory minimum wages are: CHF 18.20 (€ 14.17) per hour for untrained workers; CHF 20.00 (€15.57) for untrained workers with four years of professional experience or for workers with two years’ training; CHF 22.00 (€17.13) for workers with three years’ training. For these minimum hourly wages to apply a domestic worker must work on average at least five hours a week for the same employer. Earlier experience in the canton of Geneva, since 2004 having its own domestic workers’ NAV, has been positive, also concerning implementation. Besides protection, this NAV enabled domestics to defend their rights effectively, notably through going to the labour court.

English: http://www.social-europe.eu/2011/02/domestic-workers-in-switzerland ...

This article was published in the Collective Bargaining Newsletter. It aims to facilitate information exchange between trade unions and to support the work of ETUC's collective bargaining committee. For more information, please contact the editor Maarten van Klaveren, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies (AIAS) M.vanKlaveren@uva.nl. You may find further information on the ETUI at www.etui.org, and on the AIAS at www.uva-aias.net. © ETUI aisbl, Brussels 2011.


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