Today in Switzerland: A round-up of the latest news on Friday

Today in Switzerland: A round-up of the latest news on Friday
some cantons want to end the home office requirement. Photo by INA FASSBENDER / AFP
Find out what's going on in Switzerland today with The Local's short round-up of the news.

Immigration office warns about fake emails

More and more foreigners are receiving emails that appear to be sent by “Swiss Immigration”, the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) said on its website.

In most cases, a fictitious job in the hotel industry is offered, followed by fraudulent e-mails coming from [email protected][email protected][email protected] and [email protected].

The senders demand payment of 300 to 1,000 euros for a work permit in Switzerland and for health and accident insurance. These e-mails don’t come from the SEM, authorities say, and should be considered as an attempt to extort money and discarded.

Health officials say masks not required for ‘fully vaccinated’ people

In its newly released ‘Tips for Spring’ guidelines, the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) said if “you are fully vaccinated, you do not have to social distance or wear a mask at private gatherings with other fully vaccinated people”.

FOPH specified that “fully vaccinated means that you have received the two doses of vaccine and 14 days have elapsed since you had the second injection”.

Cantons want to end home working obligation

Many cantons are calling for companies to bring their employees back to the workplace, asking the Federal Council to lift the requirement, which was introduced on January 18th.

Zurich officials claim the obligation to work from home is a major psychological burden for employees. The canton of St. Gallen also said prolonged teleworking is harmful to mental health. “Many people are not doing well in the home office.”, according St. Gallen’s economics director Beat Tinner.

The Swiss Employers’ Association is also calling for the end of the home work requirement.

“If you work exclusively from your home office for a long time, the lack of exchange with work colleagues can be a burden,” said association’s spokesperson Fredy Greuter.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: What are the rules of Switzerland’s obligation to work from home?

Foreigners in Switzerland pay more for car insurance

People from the Balkans and Turkey pay 61 percent more for car insurance premiums than Swiss drivers, an analysis by the price comparison portal, Comparis, shows.

Kosovars, Albanians and Serbs have to pay around 60 percent more premium on average. For Turkish nationals, the surcharge is 57 percent on average.

The premiums for the Portuguese is 23 percent higher.

The surcharges for foreigners differ greatly depending on the provider, Comparis found.

For instance, Basler Versicherungen and Touring Club Suisse (TCS)  charge the highest surcharge from Kosovars, Albanians, Serbs and Turks. At 89 percent, these people pay almost twice as much for car insurance as Swiss people with the same provider.

MP wants to ban large SUVs in Switzerland

National Councilor Isabelle Pasquier-Eichenberger from the Green Party is asking the Federal Council to ban the imports of new vehicles weighing 2 tonnes or more, arguing that they pollute much more than smaller cars.

The130,000 SUVs sold in Switzerland in 2019 — compared to 50,000 in 2010 — accounted for almost 40 percent of new cars purchased in the country. And the trend towards heavier vehicles is on the rise, Pasquier-Eichenberger said, explaining the reason for the motion she filed at the parliament.

If you have any questions about life in Switzerland, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local please get in touch with us at [email protected]

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