Young Swedes becoming more politically engaged, but don't trust politicians: survey

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Young Swedes becoming more politically engaged, but don't trust politicians: survey
File photo of two young Swedes. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB Scanpix/TT

Young Swedes are becoming more politically engaged, but almost half of them have little confidence in politicians, a new survey shows.


Analysis firm Ungdomsbarometern (youth barometer) asked young people in Sweden between the age of 15 and 24 for their views on social issues. The results show that interest in politics has grown among the group in recent years: the proportion that say they have a great interest in politics and societal development is now at 42 percent, compared to 28 percent 14 years ago.

At the same time however, almost half of the respondents said they do not believe that politicians can solve Sweden's problems. When asked about organizations and institutions, the young people surveyed expressed the highest confidence in the police, and lowest confidence in political parties.

Despite youth unemployment in Sweden being at its lowest in 13 years, the Public Employment Service (Arbetsförmedlingen) also placed near the bottom in the confidence rankings, while banks, healthcare and schools done well.

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Slightly more people said their views lie close to or fairly close to those of the opposition Alliance coalition (55 percent) than the Red-Green Social Democrat, Green and Left parties (51 percent). 

The survey also suggests that old class links with voting patterns are weak among youngsters: only 17 percent of those who said they would vote for the Social Democrats consider themselves working class, for example.


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