Today in Switzerland: A round-up of the latest news on Friday
Find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.
Could Switzerland mandate the ‘2G’ rule today?
Given the worsening epidemiological situation in the country, the Federal Council is meeting today to discuss the introduction of tougher coronavirus measures.
Among the new restrictions to be debated, according to Swiss media, is the ‘2G’ rule, which means allowing access to indoor venues only to those who have been vaccinated or recovered, excluding tested people.
Swiss politicians and health experts have been discussing the 2G option as a way to prevent the overcrowding of intensive care units in Swiss hospitals.
Children and adolescents constitute one-third of all new Covid cases
Every third new coronavirus infection in Switzerland affects young people under the age of 19.
Never before have so many people in this age group been infected with Covid as now: in the week from November 22nd to 28th alone, every third new infection was caused by under 19-year-olds. This trend has intensified since then, authorities said.
In many cantons there is no mask requirement in schools - not even for teachers. Repetitive testing isn't mandatory everywhere either - and some schools that do screen are slowed down by overburdened testing labs. In many places, potentially contaminated students have to wait several days for a test result while they continue to go to school.
Urs Karrer, vice-president of Covid-19 Task Force is calling on cantons and schools to revise the “inadequate” protection concepts over the Christmas holidays. He worries that the children will carry the infections into the family during this time. "That's why adults should have a booster shot as quickly as possible", he said.
New Swiss president and his old sofa create stir on Twitter
Switzerland’s new president for 2022, Ignazio Cassis, has shared a photo on social media, taken several years ago, and showing him seated on a sofa in his living room. Through the magic of photoshop, his Federal Council colleagues are there with him.
Shortly after his election on Wednesday, Cassis posted the photo on Twitter, with a comment “Always these leaks ..." and accompanied by a wink smiley.
Forecast for the Swiss economy is positive
The domestic economy has continued to recover strongly due to the easing of most Covid restrictions up until mid-year; in the summer, GDP rose above tits pre-crisis level, according ro new data from the Federal Statistical Office.
Against this backdrop, economists expect a significant slowdown in economic growth in Switzerland in the 2021/22 winter period.
However, provided there are no severely restrictive health policy measures, such as broad business lockdowns, economy should gradually rebound in the course of 2022.
Snow to cause traffic disruptions today
Between three and 10 cm of snow is expected from 400 metres altitude, in addition to 20 to 30 cm of above 700 metres, according to Switzerland’s official meteorological service, MeteoSchweiz.
It could create dangerous driving conditions on some roads and region.
Snowfall is expected to continue along the PreAlps until early afternoon.
Regions of Switzerland marked in orange are the ones forecast to get most snowfall. Image: MeteoSchweiz
This is good news for skiers and other winter sports enthusiasts, as good snowpack will probably be assured until Christmas.
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