Swiss perspectives in 10 languages

Swiss coat of arms on national team jerseys – legal at last?

Ice hockey goalie
A Swiss ice hockey player in 2021 Keystone

Swiss national sports teams should be allowed to legally wear the Swiss coat of arms on their shirts in future. The Senate has adopted a motion to amend the Coat of Arms Protection Law accordingly.

Check out our selection of newsletters. Subscribe here.

On Wednesday it approved a motion by parliamentarian Damian Müller. The motion was prompted by recent appearances of the Swiss national ice hockey team, whose players appeared with the Swiss coat of arms on their jerseys.

According to Müller, the association was made aware of the improper use of the coat of arms back in 2018. The case is currently before the Federal Administrative Court.

+ The Swiss flag is square – except when it isn’t

The government had asked the Senate to reject the motion, saying sports associations are free to use the Swiss cross on their jerseys, but not the coat of arms. According to the government, the use of the Swiss cross on the coat of arms is reserved for the Swiss Confederation.

The Coat of Arms Protection Law protects communities in the use of their national emblems, the government said. At the same time, it protects against misleading misuse of symbols. In 2017, the corresponding provision was adopted almost unanimously by the Federal Assembly, the government wrote to the Senate.

However, Müller told the Senate that the use of the Swiss coat of arms by the national ice hockey team was “certainly not misuse”. “Let us correct this omission”. By 28 votes to ten with two abstentions, the Senate approved the motion, which still has to go to the House of Representatives.

A motion with the same wording by parliamentarian Matthias Aebischer is already pending there.

Translated from German by DeepL/ts

This news story has been written and carefully fact-checked by an external editorial team. At SWI we select the most relevant news for an international audience and use automatic translation tools such as DeepL to translate it into English. Providing you with automatically translated news gives us the time to write more in-depth articles.

If you want to know more about how we work, have a look here, and if you have feedback on this news story please write to

External Content
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Almost finished… We need to confirm your email address. To complete the subscription process, please click the link in the email we just sent you.
Daily news

Get the most important news from Switzerland in your inbox.


The SBC Privacy Policy provides additional information on how your data is processed.

Most Read
Swiss Abroad

Most Discussed


In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here . Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR