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TODAY IN SWITZERLAND

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

Find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.

Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Thursday
Many dangers await those who clean. Photo by Tom Claes on Unsplash

Meat prices set to increase by summer

While prices for most foods have not risen dramatically for the time being, Switzerland’s largest supermarket chains are expecting costs to go up within the next few months.

This will especially be the case for agricultural products dependent on the highly priced animal feed, including meat. “We expect pork, for example, to become more expensive”, including pork-based products such as sausages, said Isabelle Zimmermann, Migros’ financial director.

She added that “the war in Ukraine has aggravated the situation, much more than the Covid crisis.”

The same situation is expected at Coop, where “due to price increases for animal feed and energy, there will be price adjustments for Swiss meat, which makes up the bulk of our assortment ”, according to company spokesperson Rebecca Veiga.

Philipp Sax, vice-director of the Swiss Professional Meat Union is also expecting higher prices in the coming months, but softens the blow by saying the increase will be a “single-digit percentage”.

READ MORE: How Covid, inflation and the Ukraine invasion has made Switzerland more expensive

Government to ensure more efficient supply of essential goods

The pandemic and the war in Ukraine have shed new light on the complexity and vulnerability of Switzerland’s supply systems.

The Federal Council has therefore decided  to reform the Federal Office for National Economic Supply (FONES), whose resources had shrunk considerably since the end of the Cold War.

The government will now allocate more staff and resources to FONES, so it is better prepared to meet its mandate of ensuring the availability of vital goods and services.

They include basic foodstuffs and medications, as well as infrastructures necessary for supply, such as transport and logistics, energy networks, and information and communication technologies.

READ MORE: Chocolate, painkillers and cheese: The emergency pack Switzerland wants you to have

This is why household chores are bad for you

If you have been looking for an excuse to get out of cleaning your house, look no longer.

New official data clearly indicates that thousands of Swiss are injured each year about this time of year while performing even the most mundane household chores.

“In the spring, many people feel a sudden urge to clean. The problem is that it doesn’t always go well”,  the Accident Prevention Office (BPA) said in a press release.

Most common accidents include falls, burns and intoxications with cleaning products.

Advice to survive the chores intact? “Remember to bring a stepladder worthy of the name to dust the corners or rummage in the back of the cupboards. Chairs, crates or stacks of books are not suitable alternatives,” the organisation says.

‘Marriage for all’ enshrined in Swiss law

Though accepted in a referendum back in September 2021, the Federal Council finally enshrined  same-sex marriage in Swiss legislation on Wednesday, paving the way for the new law  to come into force on July 1st.

From this date on, gay couples will be able to marry, though the preparatory procedure for marriage can be started before this date.

Same-sex couples will also be able to convert their registered partnership into marriage: a simple joint declaration to a civil status officer will suffice to convert a current partnership.

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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TODAY IN SWITZERLAND

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

Unemployed foreigners, sexist work ads, and other news: find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the latest happenings.

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

Zug helps unemployed expatriates find new jobs

Out of the 1,300 current job seekers in Zug, a relatively high proportion of around 300 people are foreign employees. This is due to the fact that an above-average number of international  companies — mostly in raw materials, chemical and financial services sectors — are based in the low-tax canton.

However, according to a report by public broadcaster SRF, finding a job is more difficult there because most foreigners in Zug are highly specialised in their fields and can’t easily switch from one industry to another.

The canton is now helping unemployed foreigners back into the job market — for instance, by setting up job fairs where job seekers meet recruiters and companies looking for personnel.

 “Zug is a very attractive job market, and if we help the unemployed expats, many can gain a professional foothold here again”, according to Gianni Bomio, president of the canton’s Association for Labour Market Measures.

READ MORE: MAP: Where do Switzerland’s English-speakers live?

Swiss bank blasted for sexist advert

Postfinance,  a financial services unit of Swiss Post, is looking to hire software developers, but only those who  — according to an ad placed on the LinkedIn’s career platform  — “do not devote working hours to the fight for equality”.

Specifically, it seeks employees who want to work out “the difference between 0 and 1 and not between XX and XY” — the former referring to codes and the latter to male and female chromosomes.

While the advertisement was intended to be clever, “with this text, Postfinance is massively devaluing the fight for equality”, said Agota Lavoyer, an expert on sexualised violence.

In its defense, Postfinance responded that its ad was misunderstood.

“The message is that equality is firmly anchored in the culture at Postfinance and is so normal that employees do not have to spend any time on the job thinking about it”, said spokesperson Dörte Horn.

Now is a good time to sell your house

Property prices have skyrocketed in recent months, and a house today costs almost 30 percent more than a decade ago, according to real estate consultancy firm Iazi. And in certain high-demand areas like Zurich and the Lake Geneva region, prices are significantly higher.

Ruedi Tanner, president of the Swiss Chamber of Brokers (CSC) said owners who are selling their properties now “have clearly chosen a good time”.

The demand is such that “in many regions, there are hardly any more offers on the property market”, he added.

READ MORE: Swiss property prices see strongest rise in years

Idyllic Ticino village a hub of criminal activity

When the Italian-speaking canton published its annual statistics recently, many were astonished (and not in a good way) to discover that a small commune of  Riva San Vitale registered 791 crimes in 2021.

This means the crime rate has increased by 1313 percent compared to previous year. “When I read that, I was flabbergasted,” said Antonio Guidali, mayor of the 2,600-resident community.

It turns out, however, that there is no need to rush for bullet-proof vests; according to police reports, only two residents, who committed several hundred cases of insurance fraud, are to blame for the staggering crime rate.

The statistical anomaly occurred because each single case of fraud has been registered as an individual offense

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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