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

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

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Walking down Frederiksberg Allé on a summer day. Photo: Kristoffer Trolle/Flickr.

Unemployment in Denmark lowest since start of pandemic 

Unemployment fell an additional 5,300 people from May to June for a total of 108,600 Danes still unemployed, according to the government agency Statistics Denmark. 

This latest unemployment rate of 3.8 percent is the lowest since the pandemic began in March 2020, Danish news agency Ritzau reports. Denmark recovered a total of 20,000 jobs in May and June. 

“A fall in unemployment of up to 20,000 in just two months is completely absurd, and it puts a clear picture of how fast it goes,” Jeppe Juul Borre, chief economist at Arbejdernes Landsbank, told Ritzau. 

“Unemployment is centimeters from catching up with what was lost from the crisis,” he added.

READ MORE: Denmark releases a new ‘positive list’ of in-demand professions 

Weekend forecast: pretend it’s September 

Expect cooler temperatures and robust winds reminiscent of autumn starting Friday and extending through Sunday, meteorologist Jesper Eriksen of the Danish Meteorological Institute said. 

“The atmosphere thinks that it has been the beginning of autumn, but we can hope that summer returns later,” Eriksen added. 

Friday will bring particularly strong western winds in the afternoon, and Saturday offers lots of showers with brief peeks of sunshine.

“On Sunday, there will again be a refreshing wind from the west, so it will be very reminiscent of Friday,” Eriksen said. “It will be such a clutter shop with a mixture of sun and clouds and a few showers.”

READ MORE: 3 phone apps to help you make friends in Denmark 

Danish child dies of Covid-19

A Danish child has died of coronavirus, according to the Statens Serum Institut, Denmark’s infectious disease agency. Five-year-old Younis Mohammed Ismail, Denmark’s second child casualty, was in a long-term care facility but did not have any conditions that would make him vulnerable to Covid-19, his father told Jyllands-Posten Aarhus.  

“My message to other parents is that they need to be careful,” Mohammed Ismail, Younis’ father, told JPA. “Children can die from corona.” 

Danish children ages 12-15 were invited to receive Pfizer vaccinations two weeks ago, and so far more than a third of children in that age group have received their first dose. The Danish National Board of Health further affirmed the vaccine’s safety for children in that age bracket on Thursday after reviewing additional data from child vaccinations in the Untied States.

“When Denmark soon returns from holiday, society and schools will start,” said Søren Brostrøm, director of the National Board of Health. “At the same time, the seasonal effect decreases, and in the autumn and winter, both covid-19 and influenza can flare up, also despite large vaccine coverage in risk groups.” 

Brostrøm urges parents of children ages 12-15 to make sure they get their vaccinations before the beginning of school. 

SSI launches long-term coronavirus study: check your e-Boks  

The SSI has announced an ambitious study on the physical and mental health of Danes during and in the aftermath of the pandemic, according to a Thursday press release. 

Researchers are particularly interested in the long-term effects of the virus, which remain poorly understood. The study will follow participants for up to 18 months after their positive Covid test. 

About 600,000 Danes who have been tested for Covid-19 will be invited to take a questionnaire survey, the release said. 

The first invitations will be sent via eBoks on Sunday. 

“Whether people have been infected or not, their participation is absolutely crucial to the study,” said Anders Hvild, a professor and one of the researchers behind the study. 

READ MORE: Denmark reaches Covid vaccination benchmark…but experts warn there’s a long way to go 

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

No extra booster dose, school to trial four-day week, PostNord to document failed deliveries, and mortgage arrears on the rise. Here are some of the main stories from Denmark.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Covid-19: Denmark decides against additional booster this winter

No additional booster vaccination against Covid-19 will be offered this winter, the Danish Health Authority confirmed on Wednesday.

Together with an expert advisory group, the Health Authority has considered whether to offer vulnerable groups an extra booster vaccination against Covid-19 this winter.

People at higher risk of serious illness with the virus including those over the age of 85 will not be offered a further booster this winter, the authority has decided.

Denmark offered a booster in autumn 2022 to all people over the age of 50 and younger people considered vulnerable to the coronavirus.

The booster was backed up by data suggesting it improves protection against hospitalisation with Covid-19 by 74 percent, according to the Danish Health Authority.

Danish vocab: boosterstik – booster dose

Defense Minister hospitalised after dizzy spell

Denmark’s defense minister Jakob Ellemann-Jensen, was examined at the Rigshospitalet hospital in Copenhagen on Wednesday after a spell of dizziness and a headache.

“Fortunately, there is nothing serious to report and I am feeling well again,” Ellemann-Jensen said in a Facebook post. “I, therefore, expect to be back in work clothes again tomorrow, and then of course I will pay extra attention to my health in the near future.” 

On Monday, Ellemann-Jensen was in the  Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv together with Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen (S) and Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, with the three meeting the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyj.

Danish vocab: et ildebefindende – a malaise 

Danish school to trial four-day week

Pupils and teachers at Aalborg Cathedral School are to launch an experiment with a four-day week after the summer holidays, exchanging six days of their summer holidays for six Mondays off over the autumn term to see if it brings improved well-being. 

“We have been inspired by those workplaces which operate with four-day working weeks. Then we talked about whether we could do something similar, because there is a lot of pressure on both staff and students,” Christian Nielsen Warmin, the school’s headteacher, told the Danish broadcaster TV2

Danish vocab: bedre trivsel – improved well-being

PostNord to consider photo documentation of failed deliveries 

Denmark’s PostNord postal service is considering making postal workers document failed deliveries to reduce the level of customer complaints. 

The company’s CEO in Denmark, Peter Kjær Jensen, said he believed that it was rare for postal workers to claim to have tried to deliver a package without even visiting the property, but acknowledged that many people in Denmark felt angry when they receive a message about a failed delivery despite being home all day. 

“We have very few of these cases, but they do exist. And we have also had postmen who are not skilled enough, or who have misunderstood how parcels are delivered correctly,” he said. 

The company is currently trialling photo documentation in Stenløse, Ølstykke and Veksø, with postal workers required to take a photo of the package that has been delivered without direct customer contact in order to document the delivery, or take a picture of the building’s entrance to prove that they have visited.

“Customers will be able to access the image via our app if the package fails to be delivered,” Jensen said. 

Danish vocab: dygtig – skilled

Danish mortgage arrears increase as costs go up

A higher number of Danish homeowners are finding it difficult to meet the repayment schedule on their mortgages, new figures show.

Data from the interest organisation from banks, Finans Danmark, shows that the “arrears percent” or restanceprocent was 0.14 percent in the third quarter of 2022, a small increase compared to preceding quarters.

That means homeowners on average did not pay 1.4 kroner in every 1,000 kroner they were due to pay on their mortgages during the quarter.

It is understandable that late 2022 presented challenges for homeowners, an analyst said in comments to the Ritzau newswire.

Danish vocab: restanceprocent – the percentage of homeowners in arrears