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

Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
The fate of cable car fondues is up in the air. Photo by Fabrice Coffrini /AFP
Find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.

Graubünden plans to extend Covid  certificate to transportation and shops

While praising Switzerland’s decision to extend the Covid certificate,  Peter Peyer, head of the Department of Justice, Security and Health of Graubünden, said the measure doesn’t go far enough.  

“In the coming months, we will have to think about making the certificate compulsory on public transportation and in shops”, he said.

If this rule is implemented, Graubünden would be the first canton to make such a bold move.

READ MORE: Switzerland announces extended use of Covid certificate as ICU admissions rise

Three Swiss universities will require Covid certificate on campus

The Federal Polytechnic Institute of Lausanne (EPFL) was the first to announce the certificate requirement, followed by University of Neuchâtel and University of Lausanne.

The three schools decided to take these measures after the Federal Council authorised universities to make the Covid certificate compulsory for access to courses and research activities.

The certificate will not limit the capacity of rooms and auditoriums. For students who will no longer be able to come on site, the lessons will be recorded

READ MORE: Here’s what you can still do without a Covid certificate in Switzerland

Vaccine expert: Children should not be quarantined

Since the start of the school year, hundreds of students have already been placed in quarantine in Switzerland.

For instance, more than 1,000 schoolchildren in Zurich, the same number in Neuchâtel, and 600 in Aargau were told to stay at home after some students, including in kindergarten, tested positive to coronavirus.

However, according to Christoph Berger, president of the Swiss Vaccination Commission, “the quarantine for children makes little sense at the moment.”

Infection among children is not a problem, Berger noted. It is only dangerous if children infect people at risk, but preventing such situations is the responsibility of parents, not schools, he said.

There is no need for masks either. “It is enough if schools test the children every week to avoid major outbreaks”.

“The most important thing for the children is to have a regular life and go to school”, Berger added.

EU puts an end to fondue in Swiss cable cars

Eating cheese fondue in a cable car moving over the mountains has become a popular pastime in Switzerland. However, a EU regulation, which Switzerland adopted, bans “all activities involving open flames and flammable liquids during passenger transport.”

“This decision is unfortunate for the whole industry”, said Roman Rogenmoser, CEO of the tourist company in Grächen.

The Federal Office of Transport (OFT) is trying to find a solution that would satisfy the EU and fondue enthusiasts alike.

 “The circumstances under which such meals are allowed in cable car cabins are being discussed. Nothing has been decided yet”, adding that electric fondue stoves are being considered as an alternative.

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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