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Throughout the outbreak of the Covid 19 Pandemic in Switzerland, worrying information and grave concerns regarding the reality some domestic workers are now living has been brought to our attention.

We learnt, through the survey we carried out, that some domestic workers do not have access to the most basic protection such as masks and hand sanitiser to keep themselves as safe as possible whilst working.

The donation we received from Chaîne du Bonheur made it possible for SNA to open up the distribution of protective equipment to all domestic workers, members of our association or not.

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  • Distribute masks and hand sanitisers

  • Spread information to make domestic workers aware of their rights

  • Raise Awareness about the legal requirements employers have when hiring domestic staff

  • Gather information and make the general public aware of what is going on.

  • Direct the concerns raised to local and federal government and represent nannies (who are domestic workers)


Funds raised for 260 Packages 


Over 300 workers interviewed and made aware of their rights 


All packages Distributed 


Whether or not you have a permit, when you work in a private household your employer needs to respect the rules!

There is no general minimum wage in Swizerland, but the government has set a binding minimum wage for the domestic sector. 

This Minimum wage is CHF 19.20 for an unexperienced domestic worker without qualifications. 

Paid overtime, your contract needs to have set a specific amount of hours, when you work more you have the right to be paid at least at the same rate of your normal wage.

Babysitting evenings for example have to be paid extra, regardless if the kids are asleep. 

Covid specific:  if you worked more because of the school closure, your employer has the legal duty to pay your overtime or give you time off on a moment that is convenient for you.

If your employer has asked you not to come, for whatever reason ( he/she is ill, the children are ill, they are home with the children,...) 
Your employer must pay your salary as if you had come to work following the usual schedule.  He/she cannot impose holidays during this time or ask you to catch up on hours.

If your employer wants to fire you he/she must give you  advance warning, he/she must pay your salary for one month during the first year of employment, 2 months during the second to 9th year of employment and 3 months after 10 years. This starts the first day of the month that follows the announcement! 

If he/she asks you not to come to work during that time, he/ she must still pay your salary during that/those months. 

Every employee has 4 weeks of paid holidays in Switzerland. The employer can decide when but has to keep the wishes of the employee I mind. At least 2 weeks have to follow each other.

Covid specific : if your employer agreed on holiday in for example July, he can not revoke those because of the unusual circumstances. If you had planned holidays during the lockdown and stayed home, those holidays can not be taken at a later date. 

When you are ill your employer must pay your salary as if you had come to work according to your contract / verbal agreement. For 3 weeks in the first year of employment and longer after according to the Bern scale. 

We strongly recommend to insist that your employer takes out loss of income insurance for you! 

Covid specific : during the crisis doctors note are only mandatory after the 10 th day of absence.


Source: Directive Employés domestique - Departement de la sécurité, de l'emploi et de la santé

Stay home if you are feeling ill (if you have a fever, cough or muscle pain). Contact a doctor or the Geneva COVID hotline to get tested.

If you have been in close contact with a person

who has COVID, the cantonal medical officer will ask you to stay home in quarantine for 10 days. You must follow these recommendations.

If you are vulnerable, please contact a doctor and follow their recommendations.

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At Work

When you arrive at work, wash your hands and put your things (coat, handbag), in a protected area. Put on work clothes and respect personal hygiene rules (wash your hands, use disposable tissues, do not touch your face).

  • Follow personal hygiene rules

  • If you are taking care of children under the age of 10, it isn’t necessary to keep the distance of 2 meters. But do keep your distance with parents and other adults.

  • There is no need to wear a mask when you care for children.

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Personal care

  • Follow personal hygiene rules

  • Wash your hands before and after any contact with the person.

  • Keep a distance of 2 meters with other adults in the home.

  • If you cannot keep your distances, particularly when caring for another adult, wear a mask following all the above guidelines.

  • If possible, avoid contact with those living in the house and with other employees. Clean rooms when they are unoccupied

  • Wear cleaning gloves. Wash them before taking them off and wash your hands.

  • If possible, clean with water and usual cleaning products/disinfectant rather than dry cleaning.

  • Be particularly careful when cleaning surfaces that persons in the house touch often (door and window handles, cupboard handles and doors, remote controls, telephones, faucets, toilet seats and lids, toilet flush, light switches, etc.).

  • Do not shake mops, sheets and towels.

  • Air out as much as possible.

  • Wash dishes, glasses, cups and cooking utensils in the dishwasher or with warm water and soap. Then, before putting the clean dishes away, wash your hands with soap.

  • Every garbage bin must have a bag, that must be carefully sealed before disposing of it. 

  • At shopping: Disinfect your hands when you enter the store, after payment, when you exit the store and when you get home.

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In General

  • Keep your distances (2 meters) with other people living inside the house and with other employees,and if possible in public transport.

  • Avoid close contact (no handshakes, no kissing, no hugging).

  • Wash your hands carefully with soap and warm water, as often as possible, for at least 20 seconds. 

  • Do not forget the back of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails. If you are outside, use hand sanitizer/disinfectant.

  • Wash your hands : after using public transport ; whenever your arrive at work ; before preparing a meal ; before feeding children ; before eating ; before going to the bathroom ; after changing a diaper or helping a child in the bathroom ; after throwing out garbage ; after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing ; after coming into close contact with things that a sick person has touched ; after touching the common areas in your building (staircase, buttons in the lift, door handles, etc.) ; whenever you arrive home.

  • Cough or sneeze in the crook of your elbow or in a disposable tissue. Avoid touching your face, in particular your mouth and nose.

   Wear a mask if you cannot keep a distance of 2 meters with other persons in public places or at         work :

  • Before putting on a mask, wash your hands with soap and warm water or with hand sanitizer/disinfectant.

  • Cover your nose and mouth (down to your chin) and adjust the mask to your face, placing the elastics behind your ears.

  • Do not touch the mask. If you do, wash your hands afterwards.

  • You can wear the mask up to 8 consecutive hours. The mask cannot be reused.

  • To take the mask off, pull the elastics off without touching the front of the mask. Avoid the mask touching your clothes or face. Throw it out immediately in a closed bin. Carefully wash your hands.

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How to




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Thank you!


SNA volunteers