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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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
Restaurants are struggling to find suitable staff now that restrictions have been lifted. File photo from summer 2021. Photo: Mats Schagerström/TT

Restaurant staff shortage following lifted restrictions

Restrictions on opening hours and permitted number of guests have been hard on Sweden’s restaurants. Many had to let staff go during the pandemic in the face of economic uncertainty, meaning that they now have to find new staff to cope with new demand, TT newswire reports.

“Of course, we’re happy that restrictions have been lifted, but the crisis isn’t over. Measures need to be taken to stimulate business again, such as lowered VAT,” Peter Thomelius from employer organisation Visita told TT.

“But one of the biggest challenges now is restaffing businesses after two years of having to close – or partially having to close,” he told the newswire.

Even before the pandemic there was a shortage of chefs and serving staff, but according to Thomelius, the shortage has now spread to other groups of staff such as receptionists and bartenders.

Swedish vocabulary: brist – lack, shortage

Student wins discrimination case over Sweden’s gender-neutral pronoun

A teacher at a school in central Sweden refused to refer to a non-binary student with the Swedish gender-neutral pronoun “hen” for at least one semester, despite the student’s guardians informing both the teacher and a teaching assistant of the student’s correct pronouns.

Now, the Equality Ombudsman (DO) has investigated the case, and determined that the student was subject to discrimination, meaning that the educational provider will have to pay 150,000 kronor in damages. The educational provider admitted to DO that the student was discriminated against and that the situation went on for too long.

“A situation where a teacher consciously refuses to use the pronouns a student identifies with represents a serious form of harrassment and is something a headteacher must put a stop to. In school, all students should feel safe and respected and not be subject to discrimination. It’s especially important that teachers reflect these values,” Isabelle Arsova from DO said in a press statement.

Swedish vocabulary: trakasserier – harassment

Nurse reported after cutting off patient’s toe with kitchen scissors

The Tomelilla municipality in southern Sweden has reported a nurse to the Health and Social Care Inspectorate (IVO), after the nurse cut off a diabetic man’s toe with kitchen scissors, local newspaper Ystads Allehanda reports.

The incident occured in July last year, when home healthcare services contacted the nurse to treat the man’s foot, which had a number of serious wounds, including a toe which was in danger of falling off.

The nurse, who wanted to get access to the wounds, chose to cut the man’s toe off with his own kitchen scissors, after checking that he didn’t have any feeling in his foot.

The would then became septic, after which the man’s family reported the nurse to IVO.

Swedish vocabulary: – toe

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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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

Magdalena Andersson in the US, property prices drop and Turkey's Nato objections. Here's Sweden's news on Thursday.

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

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson to visit US President Biden

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson is in Washington today alongside Finland’s president Sauli Niinistö. The two will visit US President Joe Biden to discuss the war in Ukraine and Turkey’s opposition to their Nato applications, which were handed in yesterday.

“The meeting is an important security policy signal,” Andersson wrote on her Instagram account from Washington DC.

The two Nordic leaders boarded the flight to Washington DC shortly after their Nato ambassadors applied to join the alliance.

At the meeting in the White House today, the delicate security situation in both Finland and Sweden will be discussed. A number of countries, including the USA, have stated that they will support Sweden and Finland in the period before their Nato applications are approved by all member states in the alliance.

A final approval could take up to a year, and Russia is expected to react to the two countries joining Nato in some way.

Sweden and Finland’s decision to join the Nato alliance was applauded by Ukrainians taking part in a demonstration outside the White House.

Swedish vocabulary: stöd – support

Property prices plummet after central bank increases inflation rate

Property prices have dropped after the Swedish central bank increased inflation rates.

At the same time, the amount of apartments on property website Hemnet has increased to a record level, as sellers seek to get their property on the market quickly.

Valueguard’s price index, which measures changes in prices, sank by 1.7 percent in the two first weeks of May in the Stockholm region. In Gothenburg, prices decreased by 1.3 when compared with April.

This is the first property price measurement in May since the central bank decided to increase key index rates by 0.25 percent while also sharply raising their interest rate forecast.

Having said that, there was also a decrease in property prices in April – 0.3 percent for apartments and 0.5 percent for houses.

Swedish vocabulary: en nedgång – a decrease

Turkish president Erdogan urges Nato to ‘respect’ concerns over Sweden joining

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has threatened to block Finland and Sweden from joining Nato, urged the alliance’s members on Wednesday to “respect” Ankara’s concerns about the two countries, which Turkey accuses of harbouring terrorists.

“Our only expectation from Nato allies is… to first understand our sensitivity, respect and finally support it,” Erdogan told his party’s legislators in parliament.

Finland and Sweden submitted a joint application to join Nato on Wednesday May 18th as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forces a dramatic reappraisal of security in Europe.

Erdogan accused Stockholm of providing safe haven to members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) designated as a terror group by Ankara and its Western allies.

“We asked them to extradite 30 terrorists but they refused to do so,” he said.

“You will not send back the terrorists to us and then ask our support for your Nato membership … We cannot say ‘yes’ to make this security organisation being lacking in security,” he added.

Swedish vocab: terrorister – terrorists

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