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Old 31.08.2011, 17:06
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Swiss political parties and labour organisations remain divided over whether or not to ratify an International Labour Organisation (ILO) convention that offers more comprehensive maternity leave protection for working mothers.

As the curtain fell on the national consultation process on Wednesday, left parties and trade unions emerged as supporters of the move, while conservative parties and employers oppose ratification.

The ILO Convention 183 secures maternity leave for all employed women, including those working in atypical employment conditions.

Opponents say Swiss law already fulfils the vast majority of internationally agreed maternity leave requirements.

Since July 1st 2005, 60 years after maternity benefit was first enshrined in the Swiss constitution, all women in employment in Switzerland qualify for a minimum of 14 weeks maternity leave at 80 percent of their normal salary.

However, ratification of the ILO convention would mean extending payment to 16 weeks. It would also require pushing through a legislative amendment.

Read the full article: Swiss divided over maternity leave upgrade

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