Apprentice masons in Vaud given 10 weeks paid holiday as part of new trial

Apprentice masons in Vaud given 10 weeks paid holiday as part of new trial

In a bid to attract new apprentices, the Masonry and Civil Engineering Group in Canton Vaud has offered trainee workers 10 weeks of paid holiday in their first year. Officials in the group have warned that the industry faces a dramatic shortage of staff, at a time when housing in Switzerland is becoming more scarce.

10 weeks holiday for mason apprentices in Vaud

Writing in a statement, the Vaudois Masonry and Civil Engineering Group announced the launch of a new trial, in which first-year apprentice masons and engineers will be given 10 weeks of paid vacation in their inaugural year. The amount of paid leave will drop gradually as the years pass.

Officials wrote that the extra leave will be used to attract younger generations to the profession and to make the transition between school education, apprenticeships and full-time work easier. The pilot project will also include new courses on artificial intelligence, technical work and business.

Canton Vaud faces acute shortage of construction workers

The group noted that the number of mason and engineer apprentices in Vaud has dropped by 40 percent in the last 10 years, with around half of the applicants dropping out of the course in the first year. As a result, the canton is facing an acute shortage of construction workers.

Officials explained that the “paradigm shift” in working hours for apprentices will help the sector “meet the challenges” of the future. Amid the worst housing shortage in Switzerland in 10 years, they estimated that 5.000 housing units will need to be built in Canton Vaud every year to satisfy demand from the region's growing population, and new solar panels will need to be installed by masons and engineers, if the country is to meet its climate targets.

They concluded that by expanding holidays and offering more complex courses they hope to “counter the erosion observed and attract new talents”, even those who would like to pursue a place at a university in Switzerland or an institute of higher education. For more information, check out the official statement.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Editor for Switzerland at IamExpat Media. Jan studied History at the University of York and Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield. Though born in York, Jan has lived most...

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