Nachtarbeitsverbot für Arbeiterinnen: Deregulierung im Namen der Gleichberechtigung?

Translated title of the contribution: Women's Nightwork : deregulation as a straight road to equality?

Research output: Book/ReportBook


The book considers the question whether the traditional prohibition of nightwork for female manual workers could be defended against EU (then: EEC) discrimination law requirements and against the German constitution itself. While I was working on the PhD, German labour law still prohibited manual workers (but not white collar employees, or nurses, or policewomen) from working nights. Just before the thesis was published, the German constitutional court held that the prohibition indeed violates the Constitution, but that it must not be repealed without providing for specific protection against health risks ensuing from night work. The Court thus mainly confirmed the thesis' results. The thesis first considers the history of the legislation (which was based on an ILO convention), and discusses the social and health risks related to night work. It then comes to the conclusion that gender roles imply that women are at a greater risk when working nights, but that there is no biological justification (except during pregnancy of course). The thesis further develops a recommendation, based on the constitutional welfare states principle and the constitutional protection of health, to not just abolish the prohibition, but to provide uplevel equalisation of working conditions for women and men. This was the first time I also tried to work comparatively (not perfect at all), but I have certainly improved since then. An English summary of the thesis was published in the 3rd issue of the Cardozo Women's Law Journal 1996, which was also my first ever publicatin in English
Translated title of the contributionWomen's Nightwork : deregulation as a straight road to equality?
Original languageGerman
Publication statusPublished - 1992


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