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Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Sweden today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Government ministers and the Public Health Agency's director announced a five step reopening plan for Sweden. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Key points from Sweden’s plan to start lifting Covid-19 restrictions

The big news from Thursday was the government’s announcement of a five-step plan for lifting the country’s coronavirus restrictions. We’ve covered it in detail, but the main things to know are:

  • From June 1st, bars and restaurants will be able to stay open until 10.30pm; universities will be allowed to start on-campus teaching; and the maximum people allowed at events will be increased slightly depending on the event (up to 50 at seated indoor events; 100 at non-seated outdoor events; 150 at outdoor races and sports competitions; up to 500 at seated outdoor events).
  • Further relaxations are set to follow, with preliminary dates of July 1st, mid-July, and September. The exact timings will depend on the pandemic situation.
  • The government did not announce any update on international travel, but information on this is expected to come shortly.

Swedish vocabulary: event – evenemang

Critical healthcare has been postponed due to the pandemic

During the pandemic, healthcare has been postponed even in cases where a delay could have serious consequences for patients, an investigation by Swedish Radio Ekot shows.

Ekot asked 62 hospitals that provide intensive care and received answers from 51. Of the respondents, 15 say that due to the pandemic, care has been postponed that should really have been prioritized.

The same number of hospitals said that coronavirus care currently has a greater impact on other care than at earlier times during the pandemic, though other respondents say the impact is now less or as great as before.

“We had a situation during November, December, last year, where it became very strained and in this case it led to us having to cut back on cancer surgery. We also had some vascular surgery that was advanced and difficult to get in time,” Martin Takac, healthcare director for Surgical Care in Jönköping, told the radio.

Swedish vocabulary: to postpone – skjuta upp

Weather forecast: Weekend sun

It’s been a dreary week, especially in central Sweden, but most of the country can expect sunshine this weekend according to the SMHI forecast.

On Saturday, 15-20C temperatures are expected across large parts of Sweden, and on Sunday the mercury could rise a few degrees above 20C.

“At the start of next week, it looks like it will continue to be warmer with a lot of sun, except from northernmost Sweden where it looks like there will be a bit more cloud,” SMHI meteorologist Moa Hallberg told the TT newswire.

Swedish vocabulary: sunshine – solsken

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For members


Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

Training Ukrainian troops, pilots sign SAS deal, house prices, and election pledges: find out what's going on in Sweden with The Local's roundup

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

SAS pilots approve new collective agreement

As many as 93 percent of the Danish SAS pilots have voted yes to the agreement which ended strike action but also means, among other things, redeployments, longer working weeks, and lower wages.

The union Dansk Metal announced the level of acceptance on Saturday morning. The pilots could have voted yes or no on the new collective agreement until midnight on Friday evening.

Pilots in Sweden and Norway have also approved the agreement.

Keld Bækkelund Hansen, head of negotiations at Dansk Metal, said “I am incredibly happy. It is a bit atypical to see that a collective agreement negotiation ends in agreements being made that reduce wages and conditions.”

“So, of course, it was exciting how our members viewed the new collective agreement. But they could also see that it was a necessity in relation to SAS’s situation,” he added.

Swedish vocab: att godkänna – to approve 

Majority of households believe house prices will fall 

A clear majority of 57 percent of house households in Sweden now believe house prices will fall, a six percentage points rise on the last month, according to the latest edition of the monthly house price indicator from the country’s SEB bank.  

“It’s clear that an increasingly harsh climate for private finances is affecting house price indications, which lie at the lowest level since the 2008 finance crisis,” said the bank’s private economist Américo Fernández in a press message.

Swedish vocab: kärva – harsh 

Christian Democrats call for national plan for maternity care 

The Christian Democrats have called for a national plan for maternity care, in an election pledge that it the party sees as the first stage in its plan to replace Sweden’s regional health authorities with a national health service. 

“Swedish healthcare is suffering from a system failure, which is spelled ‘regions'”, the party’s leader Ebba Busch, said in her summer speech ahead of September’s election. 

The plan would see the reopening of closed maternity clinics and wards, and a guarantee that threatened clinics and wards be kept open. 

Swedish vocab: att avskaffa – to abolish 

Liberals propose campaign to bring order to Swedish schools 

The Liberal Party has proposed a national campaign to bring order to Swedish schools, which the party is calling an ordningslyft, literally “order lift”. 

The campaign will include an “order contract”, signed by all pupils and parents, and five other proposals, of which two are new. 

The two new proposals are that the Swedish National Agency for Education (Skolverket) state clearly that pupils have a responsibility for order in schools, and must come in time for lessons, look after their school books, use decent language, and arrive rested for lessons. Parents also share responsibility, and must, for instance, come to parent-teacher meetings. 

Swedish vocab: förväntningar – expectations

Swedish Armed Forces to give 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers basic training 

Sweden has agreed to send 120 military officers to the UK, where they are expected to help train up to 10,000 Ukrainian citizens basic military training, under a scheme run by the UK. 

“This is important if Ukraine is going to be able to maintain and strengthen its ability to defend itself,” Sweden’s prime minister, Magdalena Andersson, said at a joint press conference with the country’s defence minister, Peter Hultqvist, on Sunday. 

The two made the announcement on a visit to the Armed Forces military base in Boden, northern Sweden. 

Sweden will never have more than 60 military instructors in the UK at any one time, and the scheme is expected to run from August 12th to December 31st. 

Swedish vocab: att upprätthålla – to maintain