Update: 19.08.2011

Children's rights 

On this page you will find legal guarantees and other regulations from the Swiss Federal Constitution, the European and international human rights treaties and further documents under international law. This list is not intended to be exhaustive, as regulations from other regional treaties and topically similar safeguarding provisions of international humanitarian law are not included.

Federal Constitution of the Swiss Confederation of 18 April 1999

(English is not an official language of the Swiss Confederation. This translation is provided for information purposes only and has no legal force.)

Article 11 (Protection of children and young people): (1) Children and young people have the right to the special protection of their integrity and to the encouragement of their development.
(2) They may personally exercise their rights to the extent that their power of judgement allows.

Article 67 (Encouragement of children and young people): (1) In fulfilling their duties, the Confederation and Cantons shall take account of the special need of children and young people to receive encouragement and protection.
(2) The Confederation may supplement cantonal measures by supporting extra-curricular work with children and young people.

Article 116 (Child allowances and maternity insurance): (1) In the fulfilment of its duties, the Confederation shall take account of the needs of families. It may support measures for the protection of families.
(2) It may issue regulations on child allowances and operate a federal family allowances compensation fund.
(3) It shall establish a maternity insurance scheme. It may also require persons who cannot benefit from that insurance to make contributions.
(4) The Confederation may declare participation in a family allowances compensation fund and the maternity insurance scheme to be compulsory, either in general terms or for individual sections of the population, and make its subsidies dependent on appropriate subsidies being made by the Cantons.

European Social Charter (revised)

Article 7 (The right of children and young persons to protection): With a view to ensuring the effective exercise of the right of children and young persons to protection, the Parties undertake: (1) to provide that the minimum age of admission to employment shall be 15 years, subject to exceptions for children employed in prescribed light work without harm to their health, morals or education;
(2) to provide that the minimum age of admission to employment shall be 18 years with respect to prescribed occupations regarded as dangerous or unhealthy;
(3) to provide that persons who are still subject to compulsory education shall not be employed in such work as would deprive them of the full benefit of their education;
(4) to provide that the working hours of persons under 18 years of age shall be limited in accordance with the needs of their development, and particularly with their need for vocational training;
(5) to recognise the right of young workers and apprentices to a fair wage or other appropriate allowances;
(6) to provide that the time spent by young persons in vocational training during the normal working hours with the consent of the employer shall be treated as forming part of the working day;
(7) to provide that employed persons of under 18 years of age shall be entitled to a minimum of four weeks' annual holiday with pay;
(8) to provide that persons under 18 years of age shall not be employed in night work with the exception of certain occupations provided for by national laws or regulations;
(9) to provide that persons under 18 years of age employed in occupations prescribed by national laws or regulations shall be subject to regular medical control;
(10) to ensure special protection against physical and moral dangers to which children and young persons are exposed, and particularly against those resulting directly or indirectly from their work.

Article 17 (The right of children and young persons to social, legal and economic protection): With a view to ensuring the effective exercise of the right of children and young persons to grow up in an environment which encourages the full development of their personality and of their physical and mental capacities, the Parties undertake, either directly or in co-operation with public and private organisations, to take all appropriate and necessary measures designed:
(1) (a) to ensure that children and young persons, taking account of the rights and duties of their parents, have the care, the assistance, the education and the training they need, in particular by providing for the establishment or maintenance of institutions and services sufficient and adequate for this purpose;
(b) to protect children and young persons against negligence, violence or exploitation;
(c) to provide protection and special aid from the state for children and young persons temporarily or definitively deprived of their family's support;
(2) to provide to children and young persons a free primary and secondary education as well as to encourage regular attendance at schools.

(This Charter has not been ratified by Switzerland.)

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 25:
(1) (...)
(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

UN-Convention on the Rights of the Child

This entire Convention details the rights guaranteed for children.

European Convention on the Exercise of Children's Rights

This entire Convention details the rights guaranteed for children.

ILO Convention No. 182

This entire Convention details the rights guaranteed for children.

Additional information:

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