• Sweden edition
 
Sweden Democrats barred from union posts
LO headquarters in Stockholm. File photo: TT

Sweden Democrats barred from union posts

Published: 14 Jul 2014 09:11 GMT+02:00
Updated: 14 Jul 2014 09:11 GMT+02:00

An investigation by newspaper Dagens Nyheter (DN) published on Monday found that many trade unions forbid members of the Sweden Democrat party (Sverigedemokraterna, SD) from taking official positions - which are otherwise elected offices. 

While one union chairman said unions which do not do so are "weak", a political scientist said the situation presents a challenge for democracy.

The investigation found that six of the 14 affiliates refused to grant a position to Sweden Democrat members, even in politically independent associations. 

"SD's politics contravene our by-laws," Transport union chairman Lars Lindgren told the paper. "One can't represent those politics and our members simultaneously."

The numbers were even more dramatic for the Swedish Trade Union Confederation (LO), which has strong ties to the Social Democrat party. Twelve of the 14 LO unions banned Sweden Democrat members from having an official position.

Ann-Katrin Löfwenhamn was a board member of Unionen, one of Sweden's largest unions, in Dalarna for two years. But when her political views were discovered, her job was made difficult for her, she claims. She left her position two weeks ago.

"It was my own choice," Löfwenhamn told DN. "I need some peace and quiet. I sat on the board of directors for two years and did a good job. But as soon as they heard that I belonged to SD, I no longer had the right values according to certain people. It's ignorance on their side."

Ann-Cathrine Jungar, a political scientist at Södertörn University in Stockholm, said that the trade unions' behaviour was an extension of the governing parties' choice to exclude SD from negotiations - but that such methods were likely to backfire.

"There is a democratic problem when members cannot be represented by those they choose," Jungar told the newspaper. "It strengthens the party's image of being antagonised by the establishment."

Lars Lindgren however disagreed.

"If you don't take a position for everyone's equal worth, it's like saying you can just take your members' money and forget about the rest. It's cowardly."

For more stories about Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter

TT/The Local/sr (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Ebola crisis
Stockholm patient does not have Ebola
Infection clinic at Karolinska University Hospital in Huddinge. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Stockholm patient does not have Ebola

UPDATED: A patient at a Stockholm hospital was told on Monday morning that he does not have Ebola, after he was forced to spend the night in isolation. READ  

Business & Money
Electrolux profit soars after cost-cutting efforts
Photo: TT

Electrolux profit soars after cost-cutting efforts

Swedish electrical appliance maker Electrolux reported its third-quarter net profit soared 42 percent to 933 million kronor ($130 million) thanks to a cost-cutting programme started at the end of last year. READ  

National
School photographer fired for homophobic slur
Photo credit: Shutterstock

School photographer fired for homophobic slur

A photographer at a high school in southern Sweden was sacked after he called one of the students a "fag" during a shoot. READ  

Stockholm 'Russian sub' alert
No let-up in search for foreign vessel
Minehunter HMS Koster takes part in the search in the Stockholm archipelago on Sunday. Photo: Marko Säävälä/TT

No let-up in search for foreign vessel

A hunt for foreign underwater activity near Stockholm entered its fourth day on Monday as Sweden’s armed forces vowed to keep searching “day and night” for what media reports suggest may be a damaged Russian vessel. READ  

Ebola crisis
Patient in isolation after airport Ebola alert

Patient in isolation after airport Ebola alert

A male passenger who landed at Stockholm's Arlanda airport has been transferred to an isolation unit amid fears he may be suffering from the Ebola virus. But a specialist was keen to play down concerns. READ  

Stockholm 'Russian sub' alert
Pictured: 'suspicious object' off Swedish coast
Photo: Swedish Armed Forces

Pictured: 'suspicious object' off Swedish coast

Sweden’s Armed Forces have said it is likely a foreign power is conducting operations in Swedish waters, and have released pictures of a suspicious object seen in the Stockholm Archipelago. READ  

Stockholm 'Russian sub' alert
Mystery deepens over reported Russian sub
The HMS Visby combs the Stockholm archipelago on Sunday as the military operation continues. Photo: Marko Säävälä/TT

Mystery deepens over reported Russian sub

Mystery deepened on Sunday over a Swedish military operation triggered by "foreign underwater activity" off the coast of Stockholm, amid an unconfirmed report of a hunt for a damaged Russian submarine. READ  

Stockholm 'Russian sub' alert
Russia: No emergencies involving warships
A military patrol in the Stockholm archipelago during the ongoing submarine hunt on Saturday. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

Russia: No emergencies involving warships

Russia's defence ministry has said there are no emergency situations involving any its warships amid reports that a Russian distress call prompted Sweden's hunt for "foreign underwater activity." READ  

National
Cops do boy's homework after burglar call out
Photo: Shutterstock

Cops do boy's homework after burglar call out

An 11-year-old boy in Stockholm ended up getting help with his homework by the police after he rang them up saying he was concerned a burglar was breaking into his house. READ  

Swedish Honeymoon Killing
Dewani honeymoon hitman dies in jail
British businessman Shrien Dewani appears in the high court in Cape Town. Photo: TT

Dewani honeymoon hitman dies in jail

A man convicted of killing British businessman Shrien Dewani's bride has died in a South African prison, officials said Saturday,just days after Dewani himself went on trial for her murder. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Sweden deploys troops over underwater threat
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
National
A Touch of Scandinavia: Reindeer in the kitchen
Blog updates

19 October

Getting it (Blogweiser) »

"Follow Joel Sherwood on FB Few watch baseball in Sweden. This is excellent when your team loses..." READ »

 

17 October

Editor’s Blog, Oct 17th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Here’s the whole week of news in just 60 seconds. The most-read story was about a..." READ »

 
 
 
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Lifestyle
Sweden's The Bridge to become 'more Danish'
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Politics
Ten new minister faces you should know
Tech
First womb transplant baby in world born in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 5th
National
What's on in Sweden
National
Sweden rethinks Afghan translators' protection
Society
Interview with Geena Davis: 'I want to be in a Swedish movie'
Gallery
Stefan Löfven through the years
Gallery
People-watching: October 1st
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

979
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN