Parental Rights

Those who are on the point of becoming parents, or who have family responsibilities, have rights if they are contracted to a university.

In addition, every institution generally has a day nursery, although places are still insufficient and in great demand and must thus be reserved well in advance.

Equal opportunities offices provide information on maternity, parental, and paternity leave and rights linked with maternity as well as infant care facilities. At the University of Geneva and the University of Neuchâtel, information on maternity leave can be obtained from the human resources department.

Principal maternity rights

At federal level, discrimination against a female worker on the grounds of her pregnancy, maternity or family situation is prohibited. This rule applies throughout the contractual relationship, from recruitment to termination of employment, and affects all aspects of the working relationship, particularly the allocation of tasks, the flexibility of working conditions, remuneration, professional training and promotion.

Discrimination at the time of recruitment
During a recruitment process, the hiring party may not question a female applicant regarding the possibility of her being pregnant. The applicant has the right to reply inaccurately, or even dishonestly, to an unlawful question.

Protection against dismissal
The employer may not terminate a woman’s permanent employment contract either during her pregnancy or during the sixteen-week period following childbirth.

Time reserved for breast-feeding
Mothers must be given the necessary time to breast-feed their children. During the child’s first year, breast-feeding counts as working time.

To find out more:

Equal Opportunities Office (2009),  Maternité à l'Université , Lausanne  : Unil.

State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (2005),  Maternité. Protection des travailleuses , Berne : SECO.

Servizio Gender (2008),  La famiglia si ingrandisce , Lugano : USI/SUPSI.