What does the «d» stand for in job ads?

The letter «d» indicates the third gender.

More and more often you see in job advertisements that new employees are wanted like this: (m/f/d). The «d» here stands for «diverse» - for people who do not assign themselves to one of the binary genders, but define themselves as «non-binary» and assign themselves to a third gender.

The «d» in the job advertisement is a sign: The selection of applicants is gender-neutral.

The third gender in everyday work

Employers and managers have a duty and responsibility to ensure that diverse people are not discriminated against in the workplace. This means, for example, that there are gender-neutral toilets or changing rooms. And that pay and promotions are given on the basis of ability, not gender.

Correct form of address

Those who are now wondering how people should be addressed who tick a «d» in gender: There is no official regulation for this yet. The best thing to do is to ask the person concerned.

The situation in Switzerland

In Switzerland, the binary gender model applies. This means: from the birth certificate onwards, people are divided into either the genders «man» or «woman». While in Germany, for example, it is already possible to have a third gender, or «d» for short, entered in the birth register, Switzerland is not yet ready. At the end of 2022, the Federal Council did not consider the conditions for introducing the third gender to be fulfilled.

There are no official figures, but according to a 2020 report, the Swiss Ethics Committee assumes that around 5% of people have a non-binary gender identity.


Manuela Donati

Manuela Donati