Well-being of trans and non-binary persons

In this preliminary study, the situation of trans and non-binary persons is to be recorded holistically with the aim of developing participatory measures to improve the quality of life and mental health in (unemployed) working life.



Trans(identity) is when a person's internal knowledge of what sex they are (gender identity) does not match the sex assigned at birth. A trans person can identify as female, male or non-binary. According to projections, it is estimated that about 200,000 people in Switzerland are trans and/or nonbinary. A survey conducted by Transgender Network Switzerland (TGNS) in 2017 showed that the unemployment rate for trans people, at around 20%, is many times higher than for the Swiss population as a whole. The loss of employment results in great losses for the people concerned and for the state. In Switzerland, great progress has been made in recent years in medical care and legal equality for trans people. However, little is known about their impact on the employment situation and the well-being of trans people in Switzerland.

Course of action

With a qualitative study, the Bern University of Applied Sciences and Transgender Network Switzerland (TGNS) want to holistically record the current work situation and well-being of trans people in Switzerland in order to identify various stakeholders and influencing factors and to derive the concrete need for action for structural changes. The project is oriented towards the following guiding questions: - What experiences do employable trans people have when looking for a job and at work, and how do these affect their well-being? - How can work organisations support trans people during coming out, in the transition process and beyond?

Looking ahead

The project name TRACS stands for trans persons in (unemployed) working life and the strategic thematic field "Caring Society" of the Bern University of Applied Sciences, which focuses on researching the connections between health, life design and social living conditions in order to increase the quality of life and health as a goal of a society based on solidarity. In deliberate reference to the word "tracks", we are tracing the different life paths and career paths of trans and non-binary people in Switzerland. Based on this, we want to develop and implement measures to sustainably improve the work situation and increase the well-being of trans people in Switzerland in a follow-up project in cooperation with other practical partners.

This project contributes to the following SDGs

  • 3: Good health and well-being
  • 5: Gender equality
  • 8: Decent work and economic growth
  • 10: Reduced inequalities