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Gender equality in workplace


In France, all companies have obligations in terms of professional equality. However, these obligations evolve with the number of employees in the company (up to 49, from 50 to 299 or 300 or more employees). 

The contract for mixed employment and professional equality between women and men, set up by Decree No. 2011-1830 of 6 December 2011, merges the two existing mechanisms: the contract for professional equality and the contract for mixed employment.


The conditions for implementing this contract are set out in detail in the Circular of 17 February 2012.


Equal treatment between women and men in the workplace implies the respect of several principles by the employer:
  • prohibitions of discrimination in recruitment,
  • lack of differentiation in compensation and career development,
  • obligations towards employee representatives (preparation of a written report and negotiation),
  • informing employees and candidates for recruitment and implementing measures to prevent sexual harassment in the company.

Civil and criminal remedies and sanctions are provided in the event of failure to respect gender equality. Companies with at least 50 employees are also subject to a penalty payable by the employer when they are not covered by an agreement or, failing that, by an action plan relating to professional equality.