[QODLink]
Europe
Swiss vote to reject longer holidays
Opponents had warned that upping length of holidays would costs billions and see companies relocate to other countries.
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2012 20:49
Polls have closed following nationwide votes on a handful of issues, including mandatory annual leave [EPA]

Voters in Switzerland have rejected by a large majority a proposal to extend the country's mandatory annual leave from four to six weeks.

Final results showed that 66.5 per cent of voters rejected the plan, with 33.5 per cent voting in favour. Turnout was 45 per cent, according to the Federal Chancellory in Berne.

The referendum was held on Sunday, after the Swiss Trade Union Congress (Travail.Suisse) obtained the necessary 100,000 signatures to trigger a nationwide vote on the issue.

Switzerland, which is not a member of the European Union, currently has the same four-week legal minimum holiday allowance as the 27-member bloc, but several rival economies, such as Austria, France, Italy and Sweden, have a five-week minimum.

The Swiss Employers' Association (SBA), which urged a "no" vote, said citizens had realised that "something which sounds nice at first, on closer look brings many disadvantages".

The trade unions expressed their disappointment in the result, although the President of Travaile.Suisse, Martin Fluegel, said he was "proud to have raised the theme of overwork".

Other opponents, such as the business federation Economiesuisse, had warned that upping the length of holidays would costs billions and see companies relocate to countries like Germany.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Thousands of Houthi supporters have called for the fall of Yemen's government. But what do the Houthis really want?
New ration reductions and movement restrictions have refugees from Myanmar anxious about their future in Thailand.
US lawyers say poor translations of election materials disenfranchise Native voters.
US drones in Pakistan have killed thousands since 2004. How have leaders defended or decried these deadly planes?
Residents count the cost of violence after black American teenager shot dead by white Missouri police officer.
join our mailing list