Re: Unemployment sanctions - any experience?
Dear Omega Man
A few fact checks, if I may for the benefit of those who believe opinions to be facts.
Your re-quote refers to the "generous system" which pays out when on unemployment benefit (chomage). If are not aware and/or lucky enough never to have had to claim, you would receive (as a single person) a monthly amount which is calculated at 70% of your last annual salary, including 70% of all bonuses and benefits you received in your last year of work up to a ceiling of CHF10,000 per month.
Yes, you have to have paid your taxes for 1 year. How else do you think the money gets into the pot?
Compared with the £316.00 per month "job seekers allowane) in the UK, I would say that's generous.
In the UK you also need to have paid sufficient income tax (national insurance contributions) in order to get any unemployment allowance, however this can be refused/zeroed, if you have savings or financial assets over £16,000 (I know this from experience when I was expected to sell my apartment in London before being eligible for benefit).
In Switzerland your chomage payments are not penalised by your financial situation (I know this also to be true as they ignored my very generous redundancy payout from Nestle when calculating my chomage).
In the case of harassment or any other issues in the workplace, UNIA is the largest trade union in Switzerland and is available to anyone for a membership fee of CHF40 per year. (I also know this to be true because I had to join in order to settle a very unfair work situation). They will give legal protection, advice and counselling on any employment issue. Sometimes just mentioning "I'm getting UNIA involved" solves the problem.
With regard to holidays - I actually clicked on your link and you are incorrect with your quote that Switzerland has the "smallest number of annual leave days (holidays) in Europe".
Looking at the table you provided and with the exception of France, Switzerland is exactly the same as most of Europe (including the UK) at a basic 20 days minimum but with substantial additional days according to your canton (an additional 15 days if you're lucky enough to live in Solothurn). Most international employers will offer 25 days as standard with the additional public holidays paid in full. The table quotes the UK as 28 days, but it's ambiguous as the "statutory entitlement" can include 8 public holidays which employers are NOT obliged to pay.
I understand this entire thread is a bit of a sensitive issue, but it's important to stick to facts and not give false impressions or statements which may inflame an already emotional issue.