• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Sweden Democrat lived off benefits

The Local · 20 Dec 2012, 07:36

Published: 20 Dec 2012 07:36 GMT+01:00

Swedish authorities said in 1997 that Johnny Skalin, who is now 34, was suffering from a mental disorder that prevented him from carrying out his duties in a hotdog stand where he was employed at the time.

It was then that he began receiving disability benefits, local newspaper Sundsvalls Tidning wrote.

Ten years later, he told the Swedish Social Insurance Agency (Försäkringskassan) that he suffered from extreme tiredness and needed up to two days of rest after working a four-hour shift.

However, that same year he became the head of the Sweden Democrat local chapter in the northeastern town of Sundsvall. "It was naturally a lot of work," Skalin told the same newspaper.

Skalin also began to study sociology, and went on to co-author a party platform that helped the Sweden Democrats get into parliament in the 2010 election, when it got 5.7 percent of the vote and won 20 seats in the Swedish Riksdag.

Two months into the job as an MP, he told authorities that he no longer needed any benefits for his mental disability.

"If I used the system in any way, it's because I had a reason to do so. I shouldn't have to defend it," Skalin told Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet.

Party spokesperson Martin Kinnunen leapt to his defence, and accused media of "quite strange" behaviour for reporting on a private health matter.

The party's website states that the 10 percent employment gap between Swedish immigrants and ethnic Swedes is "a great cost and a burden on society."

Story continues below…

A recent poll by Statistics Sweden put the party's support at around 8 percent. The boost comes amid a spate of layoffs in Swedish industry, as the country feels the effects of the European debt crisis.

AFP/The Local/at

Follow The Local on Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

10:03 December 20, 2012 by findlaw2000
Seemingly with split personality ! Absolutely ridiculous !
12:55 December 20, 2012 by johan rebel
Many, if not most, Swedish politicians have not done a single honest day's work in their entire life. Instead of finishing high school or getting a degree they join a parrty youth league and blather and elbow their way into a position of power, from which they as often as not retire early at the taxpayers' expense.
13:36 December 20, 2012 by engagebrain
"If I used the system in any way, it's because I had a reason to do so. I shouldn't have to defend it,"

Skalin told Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet

Exactly what every idle dosser would say.

Too tired to work but not too tired to organise his political party - seems like he defrauded all the honest tax payers.
14:46 December 20, 2012 by fareasttiger
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
15:19 December 20, 2012 by engagebrain
fareasttiger - the article suggests that the lad claimed not to be able to work because of a rather tenuous disability, a disabilty that cleared up once his hard work had paid off and he was a member of parliament.

He is perfectly entitled to complain about anything, but to complain about people ripping of the benefits system when he appears to have been exploting the system is hypocracy. I guess if/when he looses his status as an MP it will be back to benefits.
15:20 December 20, 2012 by Svensksmith
Look up hypocrite in the dictionary. This clown's picture should be there.
16:33 December 20, 2012 by fareasttiger
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
Today's headlines
Here's what Sweden's highest-earning authors make
It was a good year for the likes of Jonas Jonasson (left) and Camilla Läckberg (right). Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT & Henrik Montgomery/TT

From Nordic Noir to a hundred-year-old man (and one called Ove), Sweden's authors had a good year in 2015.

Sweden named world's sixth most competitive country
The good news also came with some caveats. Photo: Izabelle Nordfjell/TT

The country moved up three places in the top ten of the latest edition of the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Index.

The Swedish celebs you really should not google
'Oh no, don't tell me I just clicked on THAT link.' Photo: Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT

These are the world's most dangerous viral Swedish celebrities, according to a new report.

Furious elk mum attacks Swede, breaks his arm
You talkin' to me? Photo: Mikael Fritzon/TT

It came back and attacked him not once, but twice.

Report: Stockholm is at risk of a housing bubble
Apartments in Stockholm. Photo: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

Stockholmers are the third most likely to experience a housing bubble in their city, according to an international ranking.

The Local List
Reverse culture shock: the troubles of leaving Sweden
Does it get more Swedish than this? Photo: Emelie Asplund/imagebank.sweden.se

Why is that stranger talking to me in the elevator?!

Police close Facebook thread after call for help derails
A file photo of police cars on Gotland not related to the article. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

The Gotland Police Facebook post asking the public for information about an unprovoked attack on two boys had to be closed because the comments section spiraled out of control.

US election
What Americans in Sweden think of Trump and Clinton
The Local spoke to Americans in Sweden after the first US presidential debate. Photo: David Goldman/AP/TT

The Local spoke to four US voters based in Sweden about who they are planning on voting for in the November election, and it looks like it's complicated.

Presented by Emirates Center for Strategic Studies
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
File photo: sanjitbakshi/Flickr

As Sweden prepares to take a seat on UN Security Council next year, Abu Dhabi-based scholar and author Dr. Jamal Sanad al-Suwaidi argues for a greater UN role to fight extremist ideologies like those that fuel Isis and other terror groups.

Video
Why Swedes want Nasa to send a condom into space
Should a condom be sent into space? It's the burning question some Swedes have posed. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT & Craig Rubadoux/AP

'We can't be sure what alien sex organs look like.'

Sponsored Article
Expat finances in Sweden: the Common Reporting Standard
National
Aliens' sex lives? Why Swedes want Nasa to send a condom into space
Sponsored Article
Let's Talk: a personal Swedish language tutor in your pocket
Analysis & Opinion
'If Sweden really wants startups, drop the red tape on migration'
Gallery
Property of the week: Gotland
Blog updates

27 September

Cutting your nose …. (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"Last week, Jeremy Browne, the Special Representative for the City of London, visited Sweden. Jeremy was…" READ »

 

7 September

Svensk or svenska? (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hejsan! My inbox is full of questions :-). Here’s one about when to use “svensk” and…" READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
‘I view the world in a different way now’
National
Trump an 'embarrassment' Springsteen tells Sweden
Sponsored Article
'Creating a sense of home': Collective living in Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching: September 23rd-25th
Politics
Russian Sweden Democrat aide resigns over suspect deal
National
Muslim teacher leaves job after not shaking male colleague's hand
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Travel
Why we adore autumn in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Gran Canaria: 'So much more than beaches'
Gallery
People-watching: September 21st
National
Stockholmers hunt killer badger after attack on neighbourhood hipster cat
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The Local Voices
Why this Russian developer is committed to helping refugees - with tech
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
National
Six key points in Sweden's budget plan
The Local Voices
How a Swedish name finally made recruiters notice this Iranian's CV
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Gallery
Property of the week: Luleå
Sponsored Article
Retiring abroad: ensuring your health is covered
Gallery
People-watching: September 16th-18th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Culture
Why Swedish TV has given these kids' trucks a sex swap
Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden’s ’a-kassa’
National
TIMELINE: Everything you need to know about the Julian Assange case
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Gallery
People-watching: September 14th
Politics
Why Sweden is putting troops on holiday dream island Gotland
The Local Voices
'What I mean when I say: I came here to blow myself up'
Society
VIDEO: Are Swedes that unfriendly?
Features
INTERVIEW: How Arthur the jungle dog opened hearts and minds
Gallery
Property of the week: Smögen, Västra Götaland
Society
Sweden's ancient forest tongue Elfdalian fights for survival
National
Where Sweden's foreigners are from
The Local Voices
'Whenever I apply for jobs I’m treated like an unwanted stranger'
The Local Voices
Is Swedish bosses' ignorance keeping refugees out of jobs?
2,961
jobs available