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Swiss Confederation takes action against Rolex after harassment cases

Swiss Confederation takes action against Rolex after harassment cases

Because the luxury watch manufacturer illegally fired victims of such harassment, according to the union Unia, they now want to take the matter to an employment tribunal.

The Swiss union “Unia” said that it is aware of various cases of harassment against the luxury watch manufacturer Rolex. Since Rolex, according to Onyia, illegally fired victims of this harassment, the union now wants to take the matter to the labor court. UNIA reported “dozens” of cases of harassment among employees at Rolex's headquarters in Geneva in a statement on Monday.

“Over the years, repeated cases of harassment at the Rolex World Service Department in Geneva have been reported to the union,” Alejo Patiño, the union’s secretary, told the media on Monday. Onia received about 50 testimonies from witnesses.

Union at Rolex faced “obstacles.”

The union said it tried to find solutions with Rolex, but faced “obstacles.” “At first they completely denied everything,” Patiño said. Rolex later agreed to conduct an internal investigation and then conduct an external audit. However, these investigations did not lead to the implementation of the measures requested by employees.

Afterwards, about 15 employees reported the situation to the cantonal labor inspection office (Office cantonal genevois de l'inspection et des communication du travail, OCIRT). OCIRT then filed a compliance request.

At Onia's headquarters in Bern, employees told the media on Monday about their boss who had harassed them for years and spread a toxic atmosphere. The company knew about it but protected this employee. A former employee also reported that he was fired after resisting harassment.

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“Unfair dismissal” claim

As employees who wanted to take action against the manager have been terminated, the union will file an “unfair dismissal” claim with an employment tribunal by the end of the month.

In response to AWP's request, Rolex said the company “immediately took the necessary measures to put an end to the situation” after discovering “functional malfunctions” in one of its departments. A company spokeswoman said: “The measures taken led to a complete reorganization of the affected department.”

It added that Rolex “made the justifiable dismissal in accordance with its strict rules and reported this to OCIRT.” We are currently actively working with OCIRT on preventive measures and are doing everything we can to avoid such situations in the future. (APA/DAP)

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