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Swiss women strike nationwide to demand equal pay, protest sexism & workplace inequality

"Swiss women strike to demand equal pay", 14 June 2019

Hundreds of thousands of women across Switzerland have taken to the streets to demand higher pay, greater equality and more respect, protesting that one of the world’s wealthiest countries continues to treat half its population unfairly...

[P]rofessional women earn on average nearly 19% less than men – and 8% less with the same qualifications. According to a recent Amnesty International survey, 59% of Swiss women say they have experienced sexual harassment.

Along with broader anger over sexism and workplace inequality, many demonstrators demanded higher pay specifically for cleaners, teachers, care workers and other jobs more often performed by women...

For many, fair wages were a key concern... But the global #MeToo movement has encouraged others to attack a wider culture of discrimination and disrespect...

While some employers said they would not penalise women who took time off work to join the protests, and others actively supported them – including Le Temps newspaper, which left blank spaces where articles written and edited by female journalists would normally appear – many were opposed.

Several told female employees they would have to book any time off as holiday, and Switzerland’s main employers’ organisation said it was against the movement...