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Diskrimineringsskydd för gravida arbetstagare. En arbetsrättslig studie av Svensk rätt och EU-rätt

Gullbrandsson, Sofia LU (2011) JURM01 20111
Department of Law
Abstract
The labour legislation in the EU had in its early stages the purpose to avoid barriers of competition and to ensure the free movement within the union. Over time, as EU labour law developed, a greater focus was put on social matters and achieving gender equality became desirable. As a part of this development, the Equal Treatment Directive was adopted. The Directive regulated equal opportunities in employment and prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex. As a further development of labour law, a prohibition of discrimination because of pregnancy was developed and later established. The Pregnant Workers Directive was adopted to protect women’s physical condition before and after pregnancy.
During the same period of time, the Swedish... (More)
The labour legislation in the EU had in its early stages the purpose to avoid barriers of competition and to ensure the free movement within the union. Over time, as EU labour law developed, a greater focus was put on social matters and achieving gender equality became desirable. As a part of this development, the Equal Treatment Directive was adopted. The Directive regulated equal opportunities in employment and prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex. As a further development of labour law, a prohibition of discrimination because of pregnancy was developed and later established. The Pregnant Workers Directive was adopted to protect women’s physical condition before and after pregnancy.
During the same period of time, the Swedish legislation developed towards a more equal labour market and the rules of discrimination on the basis of sex grew stronger. Gradually, with the influence of the EU, the Swedish legislation developed protection against discrimination of pregnant employees and rules to protect pregnant women’s physical condition was introduced.
The purpose of this thesis is to describe and analyses Swedish labour law on protection against discrimination of pregnant employees and whether the Swedish labour law complies with the demands from the EU. Finally, the aim is to do an analysis in accordance with the liberal feminist theory in order to examine whether the Swedish discrimination protection contributes to the progress towards a sex equal labour market.
Discrimination on the basis of pregnancy is a form of direct discrimination on the basis of sex and can never be justified by law. The protection has over time expanded and covers today the entire recruitment process and all forms of employment. To ensure that protection against discrimination has a real effect in practice, the plaintiff enjoys evidence-relief and an independent regulatory agency is overseeing the protection against discrimination on the basis of pregnancy. Damages, in the event of a violation of a discrimination provision, are to be larger than usual damage claims in order to set the standard that "it will cost you to discriminate”.

My conclusions to whether the Swedish discrimination protection meets the requirements of EU law are the following; protection of discrimination against pregnant employees are not clearly stated in the Swedish labour law, the protection is instead apparent only after the interpretation of the laws protecting against sex discrimination. In respect to the other provisions regarding discrimination on the basis of sex, the Swedish legislation meets the requirements of the EU, with certain exceptions regarding probationary. I also came to the conclusion that, in some cases, the Swedish protection goes beyond the legal protection of the EU legislation.
In my final analysis, in accordance with liberal feminism theory, I conclude that, to a large extent, the Swedish discrimination protection contributes to the development that the liberal feminism theory advocates to achieve an egalitarian society and equal employment. The Pregnant Workers Directive’s provisions, which establish a special treatment of a particular sex, is however not compatible with the development that Liberal feminism advocates. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
EU-rättens arbetsrättslagstiftning hade i sitt inledningsskede främst till syfte att undvika konkurrenshinder och att säkra den fria rörligheten. Med tiden utvecklades dock arbetsrätten till att lägga större fokus på det sociala området, sociala handlingsprogram antogs och att uppnå jämlikhet mellan könen blev med tiden något eftersträvansvärt. Utvecklingen fortsatte och likabehandlingsdirektivet antogs vilket reglerade jämlikhet på arbetsmarknaden och diskrimineringsförbud med anledning av kön införskaffades. Som en form av diskriminering med anledning av kön kom sedan diskrimineringsförbud med anledning av graviditet att utvecklas och fastslås. Mödravårdsdirektivet antas för att skydda kvinnors fysiska tillstånd före och efter... (More)
EU-rättens arbetsrättslagstiftning hade i sitt inledningsskede främst till syfte att undvika konkurrenshinder och att säkra den fria rörligheten. Med tiden utvecklades dock arbetsrätten till att lägga större fokus på det sociala området, sociala handlingsprogram antogs och att uppnå jämlikhet mellan könen blev med tiden något eftersträvansvärt. Utvecklingen fortsatte och likabehandlingsdirektivet antogs vilket reglerade jämlikhet på arbetsmarknaden och diskrimineringsförbud med anledning av kön införskaffades. Som en form av diskriminering med anledning av kön kom sedan diskrimineringsförbud med anledning av graviditet att utvecklas och fastslås. Mödravårdsdirektivet antas för att skydda kvinnors fysiska tillstånd före och efter graviditeten.

Samtidigt pågick en utveckling i svensk rätt mot en mer jämställd arbetsmarknad och könsdiskrimineringsskyddet växte sig allt starkare. Så småningom kom det även inom den svenska rätten, med inflytande av EU, att utvecklas ett diskrimineringsskydd samt vissa skyddsregler för gravida arbetstagare.

Syftet med denna uppsats är att redogöra för det svenska arbetsrättsliga diskrimineringsskydd som finns för gravida arbetstagare samt utreda hur väl EU-rättens diskrimineringsskydd för gravida arbetstagare har genomförts i svensk rätt. Slutligen har jag till syfte att utföra en analys enligt liberal feministisk teori för att undersöka om det svenska diskrimineringsskyddet bidrar till en fortsatt utveckling mot en mer jämställd arbetsmarknad.

Diskriminering med anledning av graviditet utgör direkt könsdiskriminering och kan aldrig rättfärdigas. Skyddet har med tiden utvidgats och är i dag av bred omfattning då diskrimineringsskyddet numera omfattar hela rekryteringsprocessen och samtliga anställningsformer. För att diskrimineringsskyddet ska ha reell verkan i praktiken har bevislättnader för käranden fastslagits och ett oberoende tillsynsorgan har i uppgift att utöva tillsyn över diskrimineringslagens bestämmelser. Skadeståndsbeloppen som ska utbetalas vid överträdelse av diskrimineringsbestämmelserna ska sättas högt för att tydligt markera att ”det ska kosta att diskriminera”.

Mina slutsatser angående huruvida det svenska diskrimineringsskyddet lever upp till de krav som EU-rätten ställer så kan följande konstateras. Diskrimineringsskyddet för gravida arbetstagare står inte tydligt utskrivet i den svenska lagtexten utan framgår först efter tolkning av lagens skydd mot könsdiskriminering. I övrigt så lever det rättsliga diskrimineringsskyddet i den svenska rätten i huvudsak upp till det krav som EU-rätten ställer, med vissa undantag beträffande provanställning. Jag kom även fram till att det svenska skyddet i vissa fall sträcker sig längre än det EU-rättsliga skyddet.

I min slutliga analys, i enlighet med liberalfeminismen, kom jag fram till att det svenska diskrimineringsskyddet till stora delar bidrar till den utveckling som liberalfeminismen förespråkar för att nå ett jämlikt samhälle och med den en jämlik arbetsmarknad. Bestämmelserna enligt mödraskyddsdirektivet, vilka fastslår en särbehandling av ett visst kön, är dock inte förenliga med den utveckling som liberalfeminismen förespråkar. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Gullbrandsson, Sofia LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
Protection Against Discrimination of Pregnant Employees. A Legal Study of the Labour Legislation in Sweden and in the EU.
course
JURM01 20111
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
arbetsrätt, diskriminering, liberalfeminism, graviditet, Recastdirektivet, diskrimineringslagen
language
Swedish
id
1969110
date added to LUP
2011-05-26 11:32:32
date last changed
2011-05-26 11:32:32
@misc{1969110,
  abstract     = {The labour legislation in the EU had in its early stages the purpose to avoid barriers of competition and to ensure the free movement within the union. Over time, as EU labour law developed, a greater focus was put on social matters and achieving gender equality became desirable. As a part of this development, the Equal Treatment Directive was adopted. The Directive regulated equal opportunities in employment and prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex. As a further development of labour law, a prohibition of discrimination because of pregnancy was developed and later established. The Pregnant Workers Directive was adopted to protect women’s physical condition before and after pregnancy.
During the same period of time, the Swedish legislation developed towards a more equal labour market and the rules of discrimination on the basis of sex grew stronger. Gradually, with the influence of the EU, the Swedish legislation developed protection against discrimination of pregnant employees and rules to protect pregnant women’s physical condition was introduced. 
The purpose of this thesis is to describe and analyses Swedish labour law on protection against discrimination of pregnant employees and whether the Swedish labour law complies with the demands from the EU. Finally, the aim is to do an analysis in accordance with the liberal feminist theory in order to examine whether the Swedish discrimination protection contributes to the progress towards a sex equal labour market.
Discrimination on the basis of pregnancy is a form of direct discrimination on the basis of sex and can never be justified by law. The protection has over time expanded and covers today the entire recruitment process and all forms of employment. To ensure that protection against discrimination has a real effect in practice, the plaintiff enjoys evidence-relief and an independent regulatory agency is overseeing the protection against discrimination on the basis of pregnancy. Damages, in the event of a violation of a discrimination provision, are to be larger than usual damage claims in order to set the standard that "it will cost you to discriminate”.

My conclusions to whether the Swedish discrimination protection meets the requirements of EU law are the following; protection of discrimination against pregnant employees are not clearly stated in the Swedish labour law, the protection is instead apparent only after the interpretation of the laws protecting against sex discrimination. In respect to the other provisions regarding discrimination on the basis of sex, the Swedish legislation meets the requirements of the EU, with certain exceptions regarding probationary. I also came to the conclusion that, in some cases, the Swedish protection goes beyond the legal protection of the EU legislation.
In my final analysis, in accordance with liberal feminism theory, I conclude that, to a large extent, the Swedish discrimination protection contributes to the development that the liberal feminism theory advocates to achieve an egalitarian society and equal employment. The Pregnant Workers Directive’s provisions, which establish a special treatment of a particular sex, is however not compatible with the development that Liberal feminism advocates.},
  author       = {Gullbrandsson, Sofia},
  keyword      = {arbetsrätt,diskriminering,liberalfeminism,graviditet,Recastdirektivet,diskrimineringslagen},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Diskrimineringsskydd för gravida arbetstagare. En arbetsrättslig studie av Svensk rätt och EU-rätt},
  year         = {2011},
}