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Swiss Council of States votes to overrule cantonal minimal wage legal guidelines


The Council of States, the higher home of parliament in Switzerland, has voted to override minimal wage legal guidelines in Swiss cantons in favour of collective labour agreements. Parts of the government argue that salaries secured by unions on the nationwide degree ought to be given a better precedence than canton-enforced minimal wages.

Companies working throughout cantons topic to totally different minimal wage legal guidelines

According to the proposals, collective labour agreements (CLAs) ought to take priority over cantonal minimal wage legal guidelines. CLAs are government-guaranteed work contracts, sometimes created between commerce unions and international companies, the place workers are given pre-agreed minimal salaries, Thirteenth-month cost agreements and designated quantities of paid leave.

Currently, 5 Swiss cantons and a number of other cities have already created their very own minimal wage legal guidelines. Supporters of the proposal argue that, as extra cantons vote to introduce these legal guidelines, entrepreneurs face unequal wage guidelines and authorized hassle, significantly in companies that work throughout cantonal boundaries.

For instance, an organization with a CLA and jobs in each Geneva and Vaud is at present topic to 2 totally different minimal wage guidelines – a 23 franc-an-hour enforced minimal wage in Geneva and a CLA that applies in the remainder of Switzerland which can pay staff a lot much less.

Collective labour agreements in Switzerland given precedent over minimal wage

“This creates an unlucky scenario as a result of cantonal minimal wages can invalidate a CLA which is said binding for the entire of Switzerland by the Federal Council,” mentioned state councillor Erich Ettlin. As the principle power behind the brand new proposal, he demanded that CLAs take priority over cantonal guidelines to keep away from any authorized doubt.

His proposal was accredited by the Council of States by 28 votes to 16. The invoice has now been despatched to the National Council for approval however is predicted to satisfy stiff resistance from lawmakers.

The choice has been condemned by the fee on social security and the manager Federal Council, which argued that the proposal overrules the democratic will of cantons that impose a minimal wage via referendums. State councillor Alex Kuprecht mentioned that it’s “problematic, for causes of democracy, to offer precedence to collective labour agreements, that are non-public preparations.” 

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