CPH Post 30 April - 14 May 2020

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DANISH NEWS IN ENGLISH CPHPOST.DK VOL 23 ISSUE 06 30 April - 14 May 2020 (ONLINE ONLY)

LOCAL Euros and Tour de France: can Denmark host them both? 2 SCIENCE

Tests, trials, tribulations The long and winding road to full immunisation

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TRAPPED ON THEIR TRAVELS Does hypochondria equal health Amid all the gloom and doom of the Coronavirus Crisis, there is a glaring positive

OPINION

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E’RE ALL jogging more than ever – hell, even our columnist Adrian 17 Mackinder (see page 16) has joined the sweatpant brigade. SPECIAL FOCUS And with most of the country’s restaurants shut, far more of They're only foreigners us are eating home-cooked meals. Penniless overseas students face We’re washing our hands crippling SU and housing costs more than ever, to the extent that our hygiene is better than ever. 20-21 Seriously ... when was the last PRINT VERSION ISSN: 2446-0184 time anyone had a cold? Or a ONLINE VERSION ISSN: 2446-0192 case of food poisoning? Curse the coronavirus all you like, but it’s climate-friendly

Ongoing study A RESEARCH team at DTU is in no doubt that most of us are radically changing our lifestyle habits

during the Coronavirus Crisis. They are currently conducting a survey to find out how our diets have changed. The same survey will be repeated in September to compare what changes the coronavirus brought on. Another research team, meanwhile, is assessing whether the Danes’ increased focus on hand hygiene will lead to fewer food-transmitted disease cases. Still dying BUT WE’RE still dying, as the latest figures confirm that 434 have been killed by the Coronavirus. Just 14 of these were under the age of 60, with a further 48 in their 60s, 125 in their 70s, 162 in their 80s and 85 over the age of 90. Gender-wise, 185 of the victims were women, and 249 men. (BH)

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Using less electricity

Birch season returns

ELECTRICITY consumption fell by 7 percent between March 2 and April 5 due to the coronavirus restrictions, according to Energinet. While household consumption rose by 2 percent, as many had to stay home, hotels and restaurants (down 38 percent), education (-39) and culture and leisure (-45) all saw heavy falls.

THE BIRCH pollen season kicked off in earnest at the start of the Easter holiday. Many new arrivals to Denmark experiencing the respiratory symptoms for the first time contacted the health services out of fear they might have the coronavirus. In related news, Denmark is on course for one of its sunniest and driest Aprils ever.

Mortality rate the same

World beaters

SINCE the first coronavirus-related death in Denmark on March 14, a total of 4,794 Danes have died. That’s roughly the same amount of people who died over the same period last year and the year before, according to Danmarks Statistik. Over the same period in 2019, 4,498 Danes died, while 5,131 died in 2018.

INTEREST in home-grown pornography is fl ourishing in Denmark during the lockdown. Th e Pornhub Model Program, a site where individuals upload their own videos, saw revenue generated from Danish reviewers soar by 53 percent between February and March – the biggest increase in the world.


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THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

Care home outbreaks THE CORONAVIRUS has killed 12 residents at the Plejecenter Sølund elderly centre in Nørrebro, three more than an outbreak at the Højstruphave nursing home in the suburb of Vallensbæk. There has been at least one coronavirus case in care homes in 48 of the country's 98 municipalities, according to Ekstra Bladet. In total, the homes house 41,000, mostly elderly residents. More than half of all victims are aged over 80.

Public smoking ban? DANSK Folkeparti wants a smoking ban in public areas in Copenhagen similar to the one passed in Aarhus on April 15. Smoking is now banned in the Jutland city outside civic houses, civic centres, administration buildings and libraries, and also at playgrounds and bus stops. However, it is not thought likely the police will heavily enforce the ban.

New bridge opens A NEW BICYCLE and pedestrian bridge opened in Valby on April 24, but without any fanfare due to the Coronavirus Crisis. An estimated 4,000 cyclists and pedestrians are expected to use the bridge, which will span Folehaven, a busy road between the end of the Holbæk Motorway and Valbyparken. It will be officially inaugurated later in the year.

Construction investment IN SUPPORT of a construction industry flagging as the result of the Coronavirus Crisis, City Hall is launching 55 new projects in 2020 with a total investment of 350 million kroner.

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No gatherings are permitted in the waterfront area until May 2, rules Copenhagen Police

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Brygge ban could be just the start

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30 April - 14 May 2020

VALMIRA GJONI

A

CCORDING to a study by Aarhus University, the people of Denmark are getting worse at following government guidelines on hygiene and social distancing – most notably the need to not congregate in large crowds. One-week ban AND ON April 25, Copenhagen Police’s patience finally snapped when it introduced a one-week ban on gatherings in the waterfront area in Islands Brygge, a popular meeting place for the capital’s youngsters.

Social distancing doesn’t seem to be a thing at Islands Brygge

Some 38 locations across the country have been listed as 'hotspots' by the police, and they could all face bans – particularly as the number of 2,500-kroner fines being issued by the authorities does not appear to be making a difference. Started slacking THE UNIVERSITY study has

identified three types of behaviour: how often people wash hands, if they avoid gatherings of over ten people, and self-perceived rule following. It generally found that the Danes were initially good at following the guidelines when the country went into lockdown mode on March 13, but have since started slacking.

Euro 2020 hosting duty in doubt Tour de France serves up a dilemma to City Hall and DBU

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OR THE next two summers, Copenhagen was supposed to be a beacon of sport. The Danish capital was due to host four games during Euro 2020 and then the opening time trial of the Tour de France in the summer of 2021. But with the coronavirus pandemic postponing Euro 2020 (the name it will continue to be known as, according to UEFA) until next summer, a scheduling issue has suddenly emerged. Euros a 50/50 chance ACCORDING to DBU head

Jesper Møller and Copenhagen Mayor Frank Jensen, some judicial matters need to be ironed out before the green light can be given. Møller even went as far as saying there was a 50/50 chance that Copenhagen will have to wave goodbye to co-hosting the European football festival, which it must confirm to UEFA by May 14. Keen to sort it out “I AGREE with Jesper Møller that there are big issues and calling it a 50/50 chance is probably quite a sober evaluation,” Jensen told DR.

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FCK kid triumphs FC COPENHAGEN talent Mohamed ‘Mo’ Daramy, 18, recently won the Stay and Play Cup, a European tournament on Playstation, which raised 7 million kroner for a global coronavirus fund. In other FCK news, striker Michael Santos has been handed a three-match ban by UEFA for ‘pushing’ a policeman during his side’s Europa League game against Celtic in February.

Huge transport hub SOME 52 million kroner has been made available from the ‘Finance Act’ to transform Ny Ellebjerg Station into the second largest transport hub in the country. Intended to ease traffic at Copenhagen Central Station, total investment for the project now stands at 262 million kroner. The hub will merge regional, freight and S-trains and also the Metro.

Park litter problem A RECENT TV2 report drew attention to the amount of litter in the city’s parks, even though all its photos were taken in Nørrebroparken. Conditions have been exacerbated by 50 percent more sunshine than normal, a 35 percent increase in park usage, and a 70 percent reduction in outdoor municipal cleaners.

Specialist wards close No name change, apparently

“However, in conversations with Møller and [Tour de France boss] Christian Prudhomme as recently as today, I have also seen an interest from all parties to sort this out.”

THE NUMBER of seriously-ill patients at the city hospital Rigshospitalet has dropped so low that it has temporarily closed the intensive coronavirus ward that opened on April 1. Elsewhere, Randers Hospital has also closed a specialist ward it opened in March. Both wards will quickly reopen if needed.

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4 COVER Heartbreak hotel: Marriage plans a no-Goa for now THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

VALMIRA GJONI

I

T MAKES a change to be championed in the media for something other than your acting. Referring to the Danish actress who in March courageously gave up her place on a home-bound flight to others, nordjyske.dk proclaimed: “Dina Rosenmeier is a hero who deserves a medal.” Few would disagree. India inbound THE RENOWNED actress, who is well known to Copenhagen theatre-goers as the star of many House You’re locked down in India. How have the last two months been for you? In the beginning, it was magical, but then the adventure started. It was late February when I first arrived in Mumbai. Vatsalya Foundation, a shelter organisation and skill centre for street children, which my mother and I have been supporting for years, is always my first stop. It is incredible the progress they have made. And then I visited some dear family friends in Kolkata. Back in the day, it was this couple who introduced my mother to Mother Teresa, thus marking the beginning of her philanthropic work for children in need. Following in my mother’s footsteps, I fell in love with this country too. And then? Blithely travelling around together with my boyfriend, we found ourselves in Goa in western India on the 9th and planned to stay there for ten days. But then, everything changed. Was it scary when the lockdown was announced? The lockdown announcement caught us off-guard. The government of India announced it with very short notice. All international and domestic flights were suspended, and all the hotels closed one by one. People went from one day to another without access to groceries.

of International Theatre (HIT) productions, is also widely respected for her humanitarian work. Rosenmeier made her directorial debut in 2011 with the award-winning documentary 'A Journey in My Mother's Footsteps’, an intimate portrait of her 75-year-old mother Jessie Rosenmeier and her dedication to improving the lives of thousands of children in India. And aptly, it is in India where CPH POST tracked her down. Ultimate gesture SHE HAS now been quarantined there for over a month, in stricter conditions than in Denmark, but it could so easily have been Suddenly it felt like a post-apocalyptic war-zone. Face masks were obligatory and there were police checkpoints everywhere. It was and still is a surreal experience. What did you do? First thing was to try to rebook our flights, but it was impossible. Secondly, the fact that the hotels were shutting down was extremely worrying because it was uncertain whether we would find accommodation and for how long. But thanks to Taj Hotels, we have managed to stay safe here in the hotel together with all their sweet employees. Did you panic? I do have moments of great anxiety, but I have also known India since I was a little girl. It is calming to know there are family friends and contacts we can reach out to all over the country in this time of distress. I just keep telling myself how extremely fortunate we are to be safe here inside the hotel property. Until now we have been able to continue extending and, as we speak, we are still here. On that note, I would like to thank the Taj Hotels for their kindness towards us. What is the story behind the photo ? Last month during the first three-day lockdown, Mumbai filmmaker Raman Lamba asked if we would like to do a Bolly-

30 April - 14 May 2020

Dina in India as a young girl

avoided had Rosenmeier boarded a Danish-bound plane in March. Instead she gave up her seat and opted to remain in western India in the company of her fiance Willi, and while their stay has been something of an early honeymoon – in the sense that it has been like spending it on The Moon itself – wood style photo session by the waterless pool. This was such a fun and creative day… little did we know that the newspaper in the shot, with the headline "India inches nearer to total shutdown", would be the very last printed version we would receive while stranded here indefinitely. Now we treasure the carefree moments from before the world changed. How are you coping? Many couples and families are separated from each other, so even though we both miss our families back home terribly, we do appreciate how fortunate we are that we are at least together in this predicament. I understand you’ve also been helping some of your fellow Danes. The Danish Embassy has been doing an amazing job at finding solutions for displaced Danes to return home. However, due to a lack of repatriation flights, we have been depending on the mercy of other EU countries having some spare seats on their departures. Goa is a large state, several hours drive from the north to the south, and it is not easy to travel to the airport – especially now when it is illegal to be outside. I therefore created a map of all the Danes stuck in Goa, with an overview of how many we were and in which areas, so when any opportunity for evacuation

Willi and Dina

she longs to return to Copenhagen and her life in theatre. After all, this is an actress who

once said: "Take away my theatre and you might as well take away my last breath.”

would arise, we would be able to quickly gather and go. I also assisted some of them in making the flight bookings and getting safely to the shuttle pick-up locations.

celled, I had a supply sent from Denmark, but it vanished in the mail. Therefore I had to find a doctor who would give me a substitute while here, and then get a driving permit to actually be able to leave the hotel and go to the pharmacy.

Have you not been able to leave yourself? There are many Danes in a worse situation than ourselves – for example, one Danish woman had run out of food and her area was becoming dangerous – and as I got to know more of them, I realised there were families with small children, elderly people and some with health issues who needed evacuation first and foremost. I used to live in NYC, and on 9/11 I remember all too well the desperate feeling of being unable to get out of the US. I think that is why I prioritised getting the ones who really needed to get back to safety in Denmark out of India first. Is it hard to be stranded in India? The Indian population are extremely kind to foreigners. We have not been exposed to any kind of hostility. On the contrary, we have been treated with respect and incredible generosity. We are in a hotel property with many frozen supplies, so we do have access to food. The biggest issue for me is that I’m dependent on a specific hypothyroid medicine, which is not on the market in India, so when our return flights got can-

What else keeps you busy? Willi and I have fixed some daily rituals in order to keep some sense of stability intact in this challenging, scary, and unpredictable world crisis. Yoga has always been part of my life, but being locked up in this curfew environment it has now become a daily routine, and we watch the sunset together every day. Additionally, I train my voice, reciting the lines I learned for the Harold Pinter play ‘Old Times’. It was scheduled to be part of the HIT program for CPH Stage program in May, which was sadly cancelled. Hopefully, we will be able to continue the tour in the autumn. I am also involved with the SoMe promotion of the virtual reading events of the HIT, as well as being part of the PR team after being cast in several productions over the last three years. Any plans for the future you did not have months ago? Yes!! When we reached Goa, Willi proposed to me, so we actually have a wedding to plan. Only time will tell how and where this will take place.


5 Jungle fever: Locked in, but locked out in Vietnam COVER

30 April - 14 May 2020

BEN HAMILTON

A

RUN SHARMA, a British documentary filmmaker and journalist, has been a resident of Denmark since 1999. His films include the 2000 award-winning documentary 'Indian Quality', 'The Illogical Instrument' – the flagship episode We hear you’ve been in Vietnam since the late winter? I spent the month of March in the mountains of northern Vietnam, blissfully riding around on a motorbike, and blissfully ignorant to what was coming. But despite the fact that I was staying in small villages in remote areas, barely seeing any signs of authority and not getting much information from the outside world, I did start to notice things changing. Like what? There was the steady increase in the number of people wearing face masks and the occasional shop or restaurant would refuse me entry, waving me away shouting: "No no no". Then checkpoints started appearing as I rode around: forms had to be filled, temperatures were checked and passport entry stamps were scrutinised. I'd already been in the country for over 14 days with no symptoms when these measures were introduced, so I was always free to go; others who'd been here less than 14 days were quarantined immediately – for 14 days. There's a theme, it would seem. And it got worse? I convinced myself that a mountain can't be closed, but it turns out it can. By the time I got back to Hanoi at the end of March, the situation was escalating. Everything started shutting down, a 10 pm curfew was introduced and the ostracisation of foreigners that I'd only experienced sporadically was becoming the norm, as it became widely accepted that the source of most new cases were people coming from abroad. The fact that many of these were

of 'Hjerteslag', a 2003 DR series on expat experiences in Denmark – and the 2010 documentary ‘Burma in Pieces’, an exposition of the military regime in Myanmar. Caught out by crisis SINCE February this year, he has been in Vietnam, and like many travellers he was somewhat returning Vietnamese seems to have gone unnoticed. So where did you sleep? Most accommodation options closed across the country, so I ended up in a packed dorm room in a packed hostel in Hanoi. I'm certainly not the fear-mongering type, but for the first time, it did occur to me that I might well get the virus if I lingered there long. It was an intense three days, and I met some interesting people to share and indulge the apocalyptic, buzzy, uncertainty-filled atmosphere with. And then of course there were the (I must admit) entertaining interludes of arguments and physical fights breaking out in the hostel (aided by alcohol, drugs and a general sense of fear and claustrophobia). I'm not into reality TV or boxing, but a Uruguayan threatening to punch a Russian over a poor English breakfast is great viewing, whether you're in lock-down or not. And this was at a hostel called Happy Feet … So the general mood was a little manic? When not enacting a decadent, dismissive or dystopian end-of-days scenario, people were running around to immigration offices, airline offices and embassies, trying to extend visas (not to stay, but in order to be eligible to leave) or buying flights home at three or four times the usual price because theirs were cancelled without warning, or because the country they were transiting through has shut down its airports. It's tricky enough dealing with a pandemic when you're at home, where you don't feel stranded and are surrounded by the familiarity of language and custom; it's certainly

caught out by the Coronavirus Crisis – not so much by its threat, but more how it closed down borders and shuttered doors. Following our interview with Arun in mid-April, he has learned that his flight back to Copenhagen on May 1 has been cancelled and that we can now officially call him “stranded”. an extra little challenge dealing with it when you're in a distant land. I know the foreign traveller abroad isn't the largest demographic or at the greatest risk right now, but they are certainly being overlooked and have become somewhat stateless, albeit temporarily. How are you coping personally? Luckily, I'm comfortable being overlooked and I hoped to get lost. Luckier still, I grew up in London in the 70s and 80s, where I was regularly told to fuck off back to where I came from, which was fairly confusing for a kid who thought he was more or less precisely standing where he came from, but all that character-building has its perks, and far from being in a state, I am in fact thriving in my state of statelessness. And before I forget to say it, the Vietnamese are a joyful, caring and playful bunch once you get past the steeliness – or you share enough happy water with them – so it's not like you always feel isolated and unsupported here. Note: Karaoke is the other way to their hearts, although my experience tells me that happy water is always present then too. Are you still at Happy Feet? On my second day there, it was announced that the country was going into lockdown for 14 days from April 1 – which conveniently happened to be the following day. It was decision time. I still had another month before my scheduled flight home (which still exists in theory) and I didn't want to leave, but I certainly wasn't going to spend two weeks in the corona hostel either.

motorbike that afternoon for a month (since all public transport was grounded) and left the city the following morning, just as lockdown in Hanoi was beginning. Based on a tip, I headed three hours south to the countryside around the town of Ninh Binh, known for its network of canals and rivers, karst peaks and caves. A lovely old couple had agreed to put me up in their homestay, so I'll lay low here until lockdown ends on April 15. Let’s see if I should have panicked more or if the waitit-out-and-see gamble pays off.

So what did you do? I managed to rent another

The Danish government estimates there are 800 Danes trapped

abroad. Do you feel trapped? To say I feel ‘trapped’ would be an exaggeration. I guess a lot of people would, but I feel pretty fine with my limited choices. I guess I am trapped in the sense I can’t leave if I want to, but I don’t want to. But if I can’t leave at the beginning of next month then I’ll happily use that word.

Arun Sharma


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NATIONAL

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

ONLINE THIS WEEK

DANSK Folkeparti is polling at an all-time low rate of 6.8 percent – down from 8.7 percent at the last election, 21.1 percent in 2015, and 7.4 percent in its first election in 1998. In contrast, Socialdemokratiet is polling at 35.1 percent – its highest level for three decades. Alternativet, meanwhile, has seen its share slide from 3.0 to 0.8 percent.

FCM’s drive-in FC MIDTJYLLAND will introduce a drive-in theatre way of watching football once the Superliga resumes behind closed doors. Around 2,000 cars will watch screens in its parking lots. In other football news, TV2 has won the 2021-2024 rights to the Europa League and Conference League, a third tier continental tournament scheduled to start next year.

Mates and adders THE SPRINGTIME sun has seen a lot more adders visible in nature as they come out to mate. The snakes tend to favour coming out in the morning at dunes, heaths and nutrient-poor bogs, and in cool spring temperatures they tend to be more sluggish. Remember, whatever Donald Trump might say, adder venom should not be injected.

NFL beckons STEVEN Nielsen from Dragør, 23, who has started at left tackle for the University of Eastern Michigan since his freshman year, was signed up as a free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars on April 26 following the NFL Draft. The 204-cm tall, 140-kilo offensive lineman could become the third ever Dane to play in the NFL if he makes the final roster in August.

Traffic project disruption THE CORONAVIRUS Crisis could delay three major traffic projects: the Sydhavn Metro construction, the Odense light rail project and the Storstrøm Bridge project, according to the Transport Ministry. Foreign workers face travel restrictions and deliveries will most likely be delayed.

Childcare, healthcare, good hair Government sets out priorities as it eases lockdown restrictions CHRISTIAN WENANDE

I

T STARTED with the daycare institutions and first five grades of school, who on April 15 started returning to their classrooms – still in adherence to social distancing, but hey, they’re kids, whaddaya going to do? Over the course of the next week, the majority of the country’s one to 12-year-olds, providing they didn’t have coronavirus symptoms or lived with anyone who has had the virus, returned to their institutions, freeing up hundreds of thousands of parents to finally do a day’s work again. Initially sceptical – it’s no exaggeration to say that Denmark was split down the middle by the government's decision – the public is slowly warming to the notion that this slow return to normal might be working.

ONLINE THIS WEEK FLICKR/ LUCÉLIA RIBEIRO

DF on the slide

30 April - 14 May 2020

Lots of bills postponed PM METTE Frederiksen has postponed 39 bills, 40 percent of which were due to be heard by July, until the next parliamentary year, which begins in October. Frederiksen made a point of underlining that bills concerning her government’s political priorities, such as fighting climate change, have not been postponed.

Handshake law suspended Fresh from the dishwasher: the toys not the kid

use of their premises. All patients again NEXT UP came the healthcare authorities, with GPs reopening their surgeries, and the hospitals welcoming back patients for non-critical treatment. For many, it means they can resume their rehabilitation, providing it is on a one-to-one basis. Patient rights, suspended due to the crisis, have been restored.

there’s a limit on the number of scientific breakthroughs a technician can achieve in their kitchen or bathroom.

Tak Tivoli and FCK! IT HASN’T all been plain sailing, as the institutions need double the space of before to adhere to the government guidelines. In some cases, like in Copenhagen, parents have been offered an incentive to keep their children at home. While several major landowners, including Tivoli, FC Copenhagen and Carlsbergbyen, have offered the institutions the

Caps, tats, slicked backs AND THEN, on April 20, a long list of non-essential services were given permission to reopen, including dentists, hairdressers, masseuses, tattooists, driving instructors and physiotherapists. The courts have also resumed, meaning the justice system is back in full swing. And, perhaps crucially given the predicament, the research labs are back in action. After all,

Face masks binned IN OTHER Coronavirus Crisis news, the Sikkerhedsstyrelsen safety technology authority has been forced to throw away 5 million face masks because they don’t live up to quality standards. A Danish study involving the Flavor Clinic at Holstebro Hospital and Aarhus University Hospital suggests a loss of taste and smell might be the first primary symptom of the coronavirus. And finally, Denmark is investing more in coronavirus research funding than Sweden, according to News Øresund – 150 million kroner compared to the paltry 68 million offered by the Swedish Research Council, while the Danish private sector has raised more than 100 million.

Drug prices spiralling

Olympic boost

We all want a puppy

THE CORONAVIRUS Crisis has resulted in a 20 percent increase in the price of drugs such as cannabis, cocaine and heroin, with prices expected to rise even more if the borders remain closed. The authorities have voiced concern that this is leading to erratic behaviour among drug addicts. However, it is also believed it will lead to fewer youngsters taking them.

THE GOVERNMENT has set aside 15 million kroner to help Team Denmark continue its preparations for the Olympics, which have been postponed until 2021. One competitor not taking part is badminton doubles ace Mathias Boe, 39, who has announced his retirement. Boe lives in India where he coaches Pune 7aces and is dating Bollywood star Taapsee Pannu.

THE SALE of puppies has increased during the Coronavirus Crisis according to breeders, with koebhund.dk reporting a 40 percent increase in weekly traffic and Danish Animal Protection a 26 percent rise. The number of dogs available for adoption is half what it normally is in April. There are around 580,000 dogs in Denmark – one dog for every four Danish homes.

THE DANISH government is temporarily suspending the requirement that aspiring citizens must participate in so-called ‘handshake ceremonies’ before being officially granted Danish citizenship.

Corona cougher jailed A 27-YEAR-OLD man has been placed in custody for four weeks by a court in Aarhus after coughing on a police officer and informing him he might have the coronavirus. It was the second such incident this month, according to East Jutland Police.

Fewer burglaries WITH SO many people housebound during the Coronavirus Crisis, there were far fewer burglaries in the first quarter of 2020. Just 5,535 were reported – down by 3.6 percent compared to the previous quarter.

Fewer road accidents ONE POSITIVE effect of the Coronavirus Crisis has been its impact on the number of car journeys and road traffic accidents. March registered the lowest number of accidents since 1985, although there were still nine fatalities, which was higher than in 2014, 2017 and 2018.

Prison officer test offer ACCORDING to the prison federation, all employees of the prisons and probation services have been offered coronavirus tests outside their working hours. However, it will not be revealed how many take up the offer.


30 April - 14 May 2020

ONLINE THIS WEEK

SEVERAL hospitals in Denmark are taking part in a promising international study testing Remdesivir, a medicine developed to combat other virus infections like Ebola and SARS. Around 40 coronavirus patients in Denmark are part of the study, which is expected to yield results by the end of April.

Appeal for help A TEAM from the Diagnostic Center at Rigshospitalet have appealed for help from anyone who has had the coronavirus, so they can fine-tune their antibody test. Anyone interested should ring 3545 7534 between 09:00 and 12:00.

On a par with public AROUND 800 of 20,000 tested health workers in the Capital Region have tested positive for coronavirus antibodies in the Capital Region – results on a par with the general public.

Testing times ahead for nation PIXABAY

Established drug study

SCIENCE

Tens of thousands a day once TestCenter Danmark is in motion CHRISTIAN WENANDE

W

HITE FIELD tents have been popping up all over the country in anticipation of the government’s plans to test every person in Denmark for coronavirus. Some will offer walk-in testing, others drive-in testing. Five appeared over the weekend of April 18-19: a 2,500 sqm area in Fælledparken near the city hospital Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen, as well as at locations in Aarhus, Aalborg, Odense and Næstved. Another eleven are expected during Week 18 in Ballerup, Hillerød, Hvidovre, Roskilde, Hjørring, Thisted, Viborg, Herning, Esbjerg, Kolding and Bornholm. Two tests THE TENTS have been set up

Ready by the autumn? A SIMPLE, inexpensive test device that can analyse blood and saliva is planned to be ready this autumn for individual use. The new research project was initiated in record time by a team of researchers at DTU in collaboration with the company ATE-Denmark.

Accuracy questioned

by the government in co-operation with the regional authority and pharma giant Novo Nordisk. They will play a large role in TestCenter Danmark, the Health Ministry’s operation to test 22,000 people a day. Visitors to the sites will be tested for coronavirus and immunity – a sign that they have already had the virus.

FIVE TO ten percent of all negative coronavirus tests could be positive, according to Sundhedsstyrelsen. Samples are sometimes being taken from the wrong location of the body, contend doctors, who advise testers to target the pharynx and lungs. Just 1 percent of the positive tests are wrong.

Priority list INITIALLY, the government wants to test the following: those

with symptoms, those in contact with confirmed carriers, and staff who work in close proximity to vulnerable groups, such as the elderly. Anyone who falls into one of those groups is advised to contact their GP or call the emergency hotline 1813. They are cautioned not to just show up at the white tents or hospital. According to the Statens Serum Institut, over 150,000 Danes have been tested for the coronavirus so far.

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DTU confident IN RESPONSE to the high demand for coronavirus test kits, researchers at DTU are confident they can produce enough enzymes sufficient for 10,000 kits.


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SCIENCE

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Vexing questions over vaccine capability

ONLINE THIS WEEK PIXNIO/BICANSKI

Food poisoning origins

30 April - 14 May 2020

A FAST, cheap and small handheld device that can detect food poisoning has been developed by researchers at the University of Copenhagen. Costing only seven kroner and just the size of a chocolate bar, the device can identify the bacterium right down to the stem level, providing a DNA analysis that normally takes days or weeks. It has a 99.6 percent accuracy rate.

New marine centre A BRAND-NEW Danish-Icelandic marine research centre, an initiative of the Carlsberg Foundation, is opening at the University of Copenhagen. It will focus on the impact of climate-related changes on the sea. In related news, a group of marine scientists conclude the sea could return to its former state in just 30 years if their suggestions are adhered to.

Method behind the master RESEARCHERS at the University of Southern Denmark have garnered some unique insights using a digital model to analyse 50 of Hans Christian Andersen's bestknown tales. Developed over the last two years, the model digitalises and publishes Andersen’s manuscripts, enabling the researchers to investigate the creation and editing of his world-famous classics.

Knee injury breakthrough A DANISH study suggests common knee injuries can be treated in just three weeks using occlusion training, which restricts blood flow to the muscle you are training with the help of an inflatable cuff – whilst enabling the patient to exercise using light weights three times a week.

Easter flower thefts OVER THE Easter holiday the rare pasqueflower disappeared en masse from the Mols Bjerge National Park. The park warns that wild plants must be seen in the wild and not taken home. According to TV2, Danish nature holds about 20 percent of the world's pasqueflower stock.

VR treating social phobia PEOPLE with social phobias can be treated through virtual reality training, according to psychologist Lars Clemmensen at the Telepsychiatric Center at the University of Southern Denmark. The VR helps them to confront their real-life fears in a safe space, free of the stress of meeting or seeing other people – for example, in the canteen, a bus or job interview.

Spasticity treatment Sounds like a long time to wait, but it's the reality, concur most experts

Blame for failures laid at government’s door, who in turn blame their predecessors ROSELYNE MIN

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OME DANISH researchers and scientists, including from Statens Serum Institut (SSI), have blamed the government for failing to present a comprehensive strategy for a vaccine and treatment program. Many despair at how the government has not initiated anything tangible, even though the Danish pharmaceutical industry, hospitals and universities have more than enough skills and researchers to find a vaccine and a treatment. Skejby Lars Østergaard, a professor and senior consultant in the infection department at Aarhus University Hospital, told Jyllands-Posten that "there is enormous untapped potential" for Denmark to find a vaccine and a treatment.

production in Denmark, but then it was sold off to a capital fund controlled by the Saudi Arabian ‘Aljomaih Group’ for 15 million kroner. Now, some Danish politicians are up in arms over the loss of control, with SF leader Pia Olsen Dyhr among those calling for the “critical infrastructure” to be returned to Danish hands. PM Mette Frederiksen concedes it was a mistake that has left Denmark in a vulnerable position.

Overall chances siim HOWEVER, the chances of the world having a coronavirus vaccine this year are slim, according to Nikolaj Brun, an expert with the Lægemiddelstyrelsen medicines agency, which is currently assessing 12 vaccine projects across four continents that are evaluated to be contenders. Additionally, there are over 30 other research teams working on a vaccine, including one at the University of Copenhagen. Brun is optimistic a vaccine will be ready in 2021.

Saudi slip-up UP UNTIL 2016, the SSI was tasked with government vaccine

TB or not to be IN RELATED news, a group of Danish researchers are assessing the effectiveness of the 100-yearold Calmette vaccine, which was originally developed to see off tuberculosis. In collaboration with a Dutch team, 1,000 healthcare workers have been vaccinated. The researchers believe the Calmette vaccine could boost the body’s immune system, reduce symptoms and even decrease the risk of somebody getting infected with the coronavirus.

Free injections MEANWHILE, the free vaccinations announced by the government on April 1 are now ready. Among those covered are the over-65s and vulnerable groups under 65 (pneumococci), health workers and vulnerable groups (flu), and pregnant women (whooping cough). The goal is to reach a 75 percent sign-up rate for the pneumococci and flu vaccinations. The vaccines will be administered by GPs.

Methane cutdown

Champagne supernova

Huge flu project

USING cable bacteria, researchers from Aarhus University and the University of Duisburg-Essen have found a way to reduce 93 percent of the methane emissions released during the production of rice. Overall, rice production is responsible for 5 percent of all global greenhouse gas emissions of methane, which is 25 times stronger than CO2.

DANISH astronomers played a part in discovering a supernova in our galaxy that has shone for a full 600 days. Usually a supernova glows between 10 and 100 days. A supernova, which occurs when a star violently explodes, tends to occur once every 100 years in our galaxy. The University of Copenhagen has called it "the queen of all supernovae".

THE UNIVERSITY of Copenhagen and DTU are working on a 60 million kroner project to identify the characteristics of influenza viruses, like Covid-19, which make it possible to jump from animal to human. Additionally, they want to identify which types of viruses have the potential to trigger a worldwide pandemic.

USING nimodipine, a drug approved in the 1980s, researchers at the University of Copenhagen are developing a possible treatment to stop the onset and development of spasticity that often kicks in following a spinal cord injury.

Prone to diabetes ACCORDING to a study from the University of Copenhagen, obese people are almost six times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, regardless of any genetic predisposition. The disease costs Danish society about 87 million kroner every single day, according to the study.

Stress link to ageing RESEARCHERS from the Centre for Healthy Ageing at the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Copenhagen have discovered a strong correlation between stress and ageing at a cellular level.

Why coffee sweetens RESEARCHERS from Aarhus University have formulated a scientific explanation for why sweet food gets even sweeter when drinking coffee. A study of 156 people concluded that the bitter substances in the coffee do not affect our ability to smell, but do alter our sense of taste.

Tackling ammonia RESEARCHERS at DTU Physics have launched a three-year, 19.5 million kroner project, 'E-Ammonia', which will assess how fertilisers can be produced sustainably without containing the chemical. Making ammonia for fertilisers accounts for more than 1 percent of the world's total energy consumption.


INTERNATIONAL

30 April - 14 May 2020

ONLINE THIS WEEK

METTE Frederiksen is one of seven female world leaders praised by Forbes for their handling of the Coronavirus Crisis. Alongside the leaders of Germany, Iceland, Finland, Norway, Taiwan and New Zealand, Forbes contended that they “have what it takes when the heat rises”. Frederiksen was particularly commended for the way she dealt with her nation’s children.

Border control extension DENMARK has extended its border controls until November 12. It cited as its justification: “Coronavirus COVID-19 (to the extent necessary), terrorist threats, organised criminality; all internal borders”. Sweden has likewise extended its controls to the same date.

Wonderful thing about ... ‘I SAW A Tiger’, a music track from the Netflix series ‘Tiger King’, has been downloaded countless times in Denmark since its release on Spotify on March 30. Per capita out of the 79 Spotify markets, Denmark is the single’s most popular territory. Listeners aged 30-34 are apparently the most likely to download the track.

Turkish plot – report A TURKISH journalist based in Denmark has been moved to a safe house by the Danish intelligence services over concerns there is a plot to kill him, reports Nordic Monitor. It is claimed the Turkish Embassy in Copenhagen has been monitoring the activities of Gülen Movement supporter Hasan Cücük and filed several reports with its foreign ministry.

Ignored WHO ALONG with Belgium and Sweden, Denmark is one of the few countries to have ignored WHO recommendations and permitted the free movement of people who have been in close contact with somebody infected with the coronavirus, Politiken reports.

ONLINE THIS WEEK SUBCOMMANDANTE

Female leaders hailed

Minister warns Muslims ahead of Ramadan Mattias Tesfaye adamant that coronavirus guidelines must be adhered to during month-long festivities BEN HAMILTON

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ATTIAS Tesfaye, the immigration and integration minister, has warned all Danish Muslims to adhere to the coronavirus guidelines during Ramadan, which officially began last week and continues until May 23. With the ban on more than ten people gathering in one place in force until May 10 at least, Tesfaye is worried Muslims might defy this recommendation when extended families, and even friends, come together to eat after the sun sets. No large circles, please WRITING on Facebook, he referred to how Danish doctors have informed him there are a disproportionate number of immigrants in hospital with the coronavirus. “Tonight your festival starts: Ramadan,” he wrote. “But it must NOT result in an explosion of infected people.” Tesfaye advises all Muslims to enjoy the breaks in the fast with just the people they live with. Video calls and digital aids can be used, he suggests, to connect with larger circles. Despite Tesfaye’s claims, there is no Danish overview of the ethnicity of those who have been hospitalised with coronavirus.

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Slipstream speculation A BELGIAN-DUTCH study points out the dangers of getting in a jogger or cyclist’s slipstream, and how the Danish government’s official advice to maintain a two-metre distance may be way off mark. It is strongly advised not to directly follow a fast cyclist (within 20 metres), a fast runner (10 metres) or a jogger (4-5 metres). Travelling side-by-side is far less risky.

African mask takes shape Quite the spread for just one family. Let's invite the Tesfayes

the minister’s viewpoint. For example, in Sweden, Somali-descent immigrants account for 0.5 percent of the population but 4.5 percent of those hospitalised with the coronavirus . In some Belgian regions, Turkish-descent immigrants account for 50 percent of the hospitalised coronavirus patients. And in the UK, BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) groups account for 16 percent of the deaths, but only 11 percent of the population. “There are behaviours and attitudes in these groups, for example in relation to illness and infection, which are not quite the same as the ones we are used to,” Morten Sodemann, a professor of infectious medicine at Odense University Hospital, told TV2.

Up until the announcement of the lockdown on March 13 there had been 30-55 asylum applications every week, so in keeping with 2019: a total of around 400. But only 38 people have sought asylum since then. In Week 12, only 16 applied, and over the next three weeks, only eight, nine and five.

More prone to the virus? HOWEVER, TV2 cites figures from other countries to back up

Immigration rethink IN RELATED news, former DF leader Pia Kjærsgaard has said that falling asylum numbers due to the Coronavirus Crisis offer an opportunity for a rethink on immigration.

First asylum cases MEANWHILE, the coronavirus has been detected inside an asylum centre for the first time, with two people testing positive. According to Immigration Services, the centre in question has taken care of the situation and is following the applicable health authority guidelines. There are approximately 2,500 asylum-seekers at 14 asylum centres in Denmark. All of them have closed common areas and visits have been banned since the outbreak. Two quarantine centres for infected residents have been established in Gribskov in Zealand and Brovst in Jutland, TV2 reports.

Schmeichel supreme

Øresund journey slump

Stranded number falling

PETER Schmeichel was last week voted the best keeper in Premier League history in a BBC fan poll involving 160,000 users. Meanwhile, in another BBC poll, the Danish 1986 World Cup strip was voted the 14th most iconic in history. The easy winner was Brazil’s 1970 World Cup strip.

ACCORDING to News Øresund, trains travelling between Denmark and Sweden only carried 15,012 passengers during Easter week – a 93 percent drop on the same week in 2019. Vehicle journeys across the Øresund Bridge meanwhile fell by 76 percent to 34,626.

FEWER than a thousand Danes remain stranded abroad now. In Weeks 15 and 16, around 500 managed to return home, according to the Foreign Ministry, leaving the stranded figure at around 800. It would appear that quite a few of the stranded are in Pakistan and India (see pages 4-5).

RESEARCHERS at the University of Southern Denmark, in collaboration with Engineers Without Borders, have developed a prototype of a mask, of which over 100,000 will be distributed to Sierra Leone and Guinea-Bissau to curb the spread of coronavirus. Designed to be close to the face, it uses the type of metal found in paper clips.

Concern over EU debts FOLLOWING the fourth EU summit concerning the coronavirus last week, PM Mette Frederiksen voiced concern that members should not be jointly liable for other country’s debts. Talks chiefly concerned how big the special recovery fund agreed by the members’ finance ministers, which was agreed before Easter, should be.

Brit charged with murder DONALD McPherson, a 46-year-old man from Manchester, has been charged with murdering his partner on holiday in Denmark in June 2017. Paula Leeson, 47, drowned near Norre Nebel in Southern Denmark. The police described it as a “suspicious death” before ruling it as a “drowning accident”. But then the case was reopened in mid-2018.

Italian aid donated AFTER some consideration, the government decided to offer emergency aid to Italy, which on April 1 made an official request for help. The aid included the establishment of an unmanned field hospital and a 1 million kroner donation to the Italian Red Cross.


10 BUSINESS

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ONLINE THIS WEEK

THE US is "preparing a substantial package of financial support" for Greenland, according to an article on Altinget written by Carla Sands, the US ambassador to Denmark. The financial support is earmarked for "renewable energy for growth in Greenland". However, many Danish MPs oppose the offer, viewing it as a challenge to Denmark’s sovereignty and in keeping with Donald Trump’s offer to buy the island last year.

Major cuts at SAS SAS IS laying off 5,000 employees – almost 50 percent of its overall staff. In Denmark, 1,700 people will lose their jobs, as well as 1,900 in Sweden and 1,300 in Norway. Last month SAS temporarily sent about 90 percent of its employees in Denmark home after agreeing to a temporary pay cut. SAS's total daily flight number has fallen from 800 to a handful.

Bilka's bogus barbies BILKA has been fined 3 million kroner for misleading customers with an advertisement for a 50 percent discount on a barbecue set between 2018 and 2019. The consumer ombudsman ruled that it misled customers into thinking they were saving money, but in reality, the set was missing vital components, and there was virtually no saving.

Lego busy with visors TOY GIANT Lego is currently producing 13,500 visors a day for the Danish health services free of charge. At its factory in Billund, Lego is running six machines around the clock in an effort to produce as many visors as possible – an effort involving 100 of its staff.

Housing slowdown HOUSING sales in Denmark slowed down in March, according to Boligsiden.dk. In March 2020, 1,288 apartments were sold – a fall of 17.3 percent compared to March 2019. The dip bucks the seasonal upsurge normally seen in March, Nordea Kredit informs Finans.

Enough left in the bank – just ...

ONLINE THIS WEEK PIXABAY

Alarmed by US offer

30 April - 14 May 2020

Danish state should be able to scrape together 250 billion kroner to balance it books NATHAN WALMER

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ITH DENMARK in lockdown and the country’s economy facing great uncertainty, the government has passed a series of massive packages over the past weeks in a bid to help companies, employees and entrepreneurs survive the Coronavirus Crisis (see factbox). Well, pretty soon it’ll be time to pay up. And it ain’t no pittance. In order to finance all the grand packages, the state will need to come up with a whopping 250 billion kroner by July, according to a report from Nationalbanken. Looks good for now WITH 130 billion sitting in the coffers of its central bank, the state is well placed to deliver, and it is believed it will raise part of the shortfall by issuing government bonds and treasury bills. Low state debt, healthy public finances and a top rating with the big international credit rating agencies will also help Denmark on its way. Overall, Nationalbanken expects Danish entities will be required to loan at least half of the total amount.

Friendlier than Wolt A NEWLY launched food deliveries service, Tribe Takeaway, charges takeaway providers with fees up to 70 percent cheaper than market leader Wolt. Additionally, for every meal purchased through Tribe Takeaway, a meal is automatically shared with a child in need via the UN World Food Program. The service can be found on Facebook.

Crop rotation pilot

It’s time to bust open that piggy bank

coronavirus outbreak, Danske Industri predicts the loss will be 8.3 percent. If that 190 billion kroner loss is passed on to every Dane evenly, the number rounds up to 33,000 kroner per person this year alone. DI's estimate has risen approximately 25 percent from 155 billion kroner – its prediction five weeks ago.

KEY MOVES SO FAR: - Compensation for big event cancellations - Tax and VAT postponed - New coronavirus unit for business sector - Wage compensation for companies (state cover up to 75 percent of wages – max 30,000 kroner a month) - Aid package for small and medium-sized companies - Compensation for entrepreneurs and freelancers - Compensation for fixed company costs - More loan options for students - Aid packages for the media - Aid package for the homeless - Aid for vulnerable kids - Aid to help Africa fight virus - Aid package for artists - Aid package for sports associations - Aid package for social organisations

Large fall in GDP WHILE the Finance Ministry predicts the country's GDP could contract from anywhere between 3 and 7 percent in 2020 due to the impact of the

Consumer confidence slump MOST PEOPLE in Denmark, perhaps understandably, have tightened their purse strings, resulting in one of the worst slumps in consumer confidence in living memory. Monthly Danmarks Statistik figures reveal that consumer confidence fell from 0.4 to -11.9 in April – the lowest level for ten years and the largest monthly decline since records began in 1974. Back in January, consumer confidence stood at 4.5.

Vestas lays off 400

Norwegian disaster

Virus a work injury

WIND TURBINE manufacturer Vestas is laying off 400 employees as it has stopped a number of ongoing technology projects during the pandemic. Most of them are in Denmark: the majority in Aarhus and Lem. Additionally, a number of management-level employees have agreed to a 10 percent paycut until the end of 2020.

SOME 614 people lost their jobs after Norwegian Air filed for bankruptcy at its three Danish subsidiaries. Despite access to Danish relief packages and overall cost reductions, the payroll of the airline's pilots and cabin crew was just too burdensome. A Swedish subsidiary has also been declared bankrupt.

THE EMPLOYMENT Ministry has confirmed that the coronavirus can be considered a work injury if the virus was probably contracted at work – as has been the case with many healthcare workers. The labour inspection authority will accordingly change the rules pertaining to injury compensation.

THE ENVIRONMENT and Food Ministry has picked eight farmers for a pilot project in which they will be exempt from various rules regarding crop rotation. The exemptions are intended to allow greater freedom and flexibility for farmers rotating crops – freedom the industry has been seeking for years.

Sanitiser stock boost HAND-SANITISER stocks have been replenished following a long period of severe shortages thanks to several companies helping with production – among them Carlsberg. In related news, Matas has handed over 100,000 bottles of free hand-sanitiser to returning workers at kindergartens and schools.

Export possibilities DANISH companies are busy producing protective equipment such as masks, hand sanitisers and face visors, and Dansk Industri is ready to talk on their behalf to countries outside the EU that are in short supply of protective equipment. However, to export the goods a special permit might be needed from the EU.

E-commerce boom WITH MOST storefronts still closed, e-commerce is booming. Parcel services GLS and Postnord have told TV2 that the country is shopping online at the same rate as during one of the busiest periods of the ‘Black Friday’ weekend. Hand-sanitiser, cleaning supplies, gardening tools, home exercise equipment and toys are among the most popular items.


BUSINESS FEATURE

30 April - 14 May 2020

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Adjust your bearings: integrating internationals is a two-way street Signe Biering Nielsen, an advisor and leadership coach for international professionals, outlines the challenges faced by companies onboarding new employees from overseas DAVE SMITH

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OMETIMES in the rush to recruit and sign all the paperwork, the employers and authorities neglect to tell international professionals how appreciated they are. This can be even more pronounced in a time of crisis. Fortunately, they can turn to Signe Biering Nielsen. As her name suggests, she’ll help you find your bearings, sending out a signal that you’re valued. As an advisor and leadership coach for international professionals, both Danes and non-Danes, she has both knowledge and experience in abundance. Armed with an MA in European politics, she worked for the Foreign Ministry as a diplomat for 20 years, serving as the deputy ambassador to Israel in her last posting. And not only that, she’s also a qualified lawyer who specialises in international law. It’s safe to say that you’re in safe hands with Signe Biering Nielsen. Why did you settle in Denmark as a leadership coach – why stop being a diplomat? I got a coaching degree more or less by chance in 2013 and found out I made a real and tangible difference to the people I worked with. And – when coaching – I felt a purpose I had never felt to the same degree in my work as a diplomat. It sounds so simple now, in hindsight. But in the beginning it was very hard to acknowledge even to myself that I wanted to work with people. I thought I’d had a perfectly good purpose as a diplomat. I mean, how about “doing good in the world” for a purpose? Pretty powerful. And I had a good career – why stop? My family liked travelling, in spite of all the challenges. I felt a strong connection with my colleagues and the ministry. I had grown up in that organisation and felt at home there. On top of it all it was a very prestigious place to work. I am not proud to admit that it made a difference – but it did. Leave international politics to work ‘with people’? It did not sound very sexy at the time. But I guess with age comes another kind of strength: the strength of admitting

you have changed. Or that life is not straightforward. Or that some things were important and now they do not seem that important anymore. Or that life is short and you have to dare. Still it took years – five years to be precise – before I left the diplomatic service. Luckily, I’m now not in doubt that I made the right choice. But the process has given me a deep understanding of how incredibly challenging it is to change yourself. It has given me an even deeper sense of purpose: I want to help others overcome resistance to change as I have overcome it. I know change is possible – but I also know that it is very challenging to make deep changes and that we all need someone to support us along the way. We understand that you are currently coaching health professionals – and without charge? I have teamed up with a number of professional coaches on the platform ‘Heart-to-Heart’. We offer free coaching to health professionals at this crucial time – both Danish and English speakers. Our focus is not necessarily the people on the frontline but the people challenged by changed leadership, organisational setup, work content etc. We want to ensure that the health professionals do not get dispirited as they are more needed than ever – during and after the current crisis. The coronavirus may pass – in due course – but we need the health professionals to remain in the health sector and keep their sense of purpose. This is where professional coaches can contribute. I look forward to the meetings I have lined up in the weeks ahead. Why work with international professionals? I have worked with diversity and leadership all my working life. Many do not realise this but embassies are very diverse. The vast majority of Danish embassies actually only consist of a handful of Danes at the most – the rest are locals or other internationals. It is now a deep part of me: knowing what it is like to live and work in a place that is not your own – to work with colleagues from other cultures. From my first job, working in The Gambia as a lawyer, to my last, as deputy ambassador to Israel, I have enjoyed the challenge both professionally and personally. My experiences in India, China, Israel, Brussels, New York differed – naturally. But they all had common leadership challenges.

What challenges do you normally face? When I started out as an advisor and coach I soon discovered that the challenges met by the international professionals in my practice only partly depended on the individual. I saw a need for a systemic approach to international talent. Companies have to make themselves attractive – via good onboarding – to new hires. Therefore, I advise companies on how to onboard international professionals. It is an issue that spans HR/P&C, R&D, strategy and management, and covers such areas as: The Coronavirus Crisis has only made that insight more urgent. Irrespective of the crisis, Denmark needs international talent. International competition regarding top talent will be even fiercer in the future as companies strive to regain territory with an eye for new opportunities. Companies have to make themselves attractive – via good onboarding – to new hires. This is an issue at the forefront of leadership: how to ensure you have the right people on your team particularly now. Danish companies know they have to look to the outside world – but they feel the competition from other countries, such as the Netherlands, Sweden, when trying to attract the most talented. The edge is ensuring an attractive offering – for the young generation this includes being a part of the team and feeling you contribute from the get go. Another issue is how to postpone the need for a new hire. If the newcomer feels at home, feels there is a purpose with their presence in Denmark, feels that they contribute from Day 1, they are much less likely to leave the job early. Even in light of other challenges they may encounter in Denmark such as the current crisis. There is no doubt they need extra attention during this time and I am afraid they are not getting it. The crisis is compounding what can be interpreted asa lack of friendliness among Danes – to give one small example.

A third issue is information sharing and networking: being new to Denmark, the company has to ensure that you get the network necessary – both internally in the company and externally. Without a network you can get very little done in a country like Denmark where networks are created at a very early stage in life and people are unlikely to be open and friendly to others – let alone to strangers. Companies forget this. A fourth issue is the need for companies to consult with their international employees about how they view their business, Denmark and the future. What do the internationals think of the company culture? Is it truly international? Does it need to evolve? This will give you the option – as a leader, manager, company administrator – to develop in the direction you choose rather than being led by circumstance. Looking at these four reasons it does sound like a challenging task – to invite the newcomer in in such a way. In my experience it is not, if leadership takes the responsibility. HR cannot carry the agenda alone. Many new hires are very willing to contribute with their view and their ideas – especially if they are treated with respect from the beginning. But it does require the different departments to co-operate – and it in particular requires leadership acknowledging the need for a true internationalisation of the company, including an openness towards the ideas and insights coming from the international professionals.

Signe Biering Nielsen


12 BUSINESS OPINION THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

WE'RE WELCOME – HONEST! British-born CEO & entrepreneur Karey-Anne has lived in Denmark for 17 years and is the founder of English Job Denmark (englishjobdenmark.dk). She founded EJD to address the employment challenges faced by expats in settling into a new country dominated by unspoken rules.

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OW, WHAT a ride the last few weeks have been! With the country in lockdown due to Covid-19 and the adjustments needed to facilitate a life that resembles normality, it’s taken time to adjust. Hard times for all FROM HOME-SCHOOLING, working at home and the closure of the restaurants and cafes, to children being unable

First-time parent again! FEELING challenged at every turn, I have returned to a feeling that I can only liken to that of being a new parent and having to navigate and learn as you go along. ‘Winging it’ and making decisions based on no prior knowledge or experience has become a new past-time! I’m not a new mum, nor a new CEO, step-mum or wife, but the way in which I manage my company and help to hold my family together has changed almost overnight. Shopping for groceries and choosing whether our children can play outside or go to school have all presented decisions that need to be taken – and almost entirely for the first time without precedence.

STEEN VIVE UNION VIEWS Steen is senior advisor at Djøf, the Danish Association of Lawyers and Economists. He is a blogger and manager of various projects aimed at generating jobs in the private sector. In this column he writes about trends and tendencies in the labour market. Follow him on Twitter @SteenVive.

Consequences in Denmark THIS SETBACK in individual countries is mutually reinforced through international trade and investment. For a small open economy such as Denmark, the world economy is particularly important,

Virtual existence I HAVE attended online yoga, bike fitting and online brand awareness sessions – all whilst wearing ‘house clothes’. I am now signed up for a virtual half and full marathon, along with multiple Ironman, swimming and and usually the growth of our economy follows developments abroad. According to our government, we are looking at a protracted recession. Dansk Industri estimates that between 30,000 and 75,000 employees may lose their jobs. It is still too early to predict anything with certainty. However, our economy had a strong starting point, with high employment and sound public finances. I hope our flexible labour market and strong social safety net contributes to a quick recovery. Yet I realise that we are all affected. Digital transformation AT A MINIMUM, our work situation has changed significantly. For desk workers like me, days at the office have been traded for working from home, which forces us to collaborate effectively with colleagues miles apart. According to the annual survey of digitisation in Europe in 2019,

Push the virus into the background and find your own rhythm

running races – all adding to my new virtual racing portfolio. My working day has shifted from events and courses with multiple attendees to online webinars, telephone hotlines and virtual drop-in sessions. The virtual world has become a necessary reality that needs to be embraced in order to survive. Businesses are adapting to provide online services, home schooling is now structured around Zoom group meetings, whilst my 10-year-old who doesn’t like to read is now embracing books on an online forum that offers a social aspect

of speaking about it afterwards. It’s lots of change, but not all in a negative trajectory. Own your reality THERE is so much happening in the media, with all manner of worrying statistics, arguments, thoughts and assumptions being shared, but now is not the time to be negative. Now is the time to create your reality – one that you wish to be a part of. With hashtags such as #anywhereanytime and #anythingispossible trending, I truly believe that our reality, whether it be virtual or otherwise, is ours to define. PIXABAY

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T THE TIME of writing, Denmark is doing better at the Coronavirus Crisis than expected. That is, if we track the numbers of positive cases and the death toll. However, if we focus on our society’s economy, there is no doubt that it is not only in intensive care but also on a ventilator. The outbreak of coronavirus has hit the world economy hard. Several international organisations point to noticeably negative impacts on GDP and employment. According to the International Monetary Fund, the downturn in the world economy could be at least as severe as during the 2008 financial crisis.

Undoubted positives BUT FOR all the negatives of the situation, there are undoubtedly positives, and I have been overwhelmed by the stories of struggle and success that celebrate life: from assemblies clapping in the street to celebrate health professionals, to those making donations for Captain Tom Moore circling around his garden, and who can forget those balcony parties in Italy? Our new reality has become the norm. People taking video conferencing meetings in pyjamas, increased time on social media and online family parties have created a togetherness that can only be likened to wartime stories of camaraderie and solidarity. Whilst out running last weekend participating in Danmark Løber (Denmark Running), I gave other runners a wave and a smile and was met with smiles and positivity all the way.

PIXABAY

KAREY-ANNE DUEVANG

to play in parks, it has meant people have had to redefine their daily routines. I’m a mum of to two, stepmum of one, wife and CEO, and I can say hand-on-heart that the last six weeks have been the hardest and most challenging I have ever experienced. As a law graduate, I define what is to come by precedence based on what has been.

30 April - 14 May 2020

In the future, our whole faces will be masks

we are among the European leaders at using internet services and for the spread of broadband. This has been a huge benefit during the Coronavirus Crisis. We have witnessed a transition. Working from home, we are receiving a digital education and learning about new business models. Many of us are mastering what had previously seemed difficult: skills we

would have not thought possible to acquire in just a few weeks. I hope the transition we experience will serve as a catalyst for a digital transformation – one in which we establish new business models and ways to work in collaborative relationships that thrive. It could be a transformation that we will remember as a positive outcome in a post-coronavirus reality.


BUSINESS OPINION

30 April - 14 May 2020

CARLOS MONTERO GIVE YOURSELF A CHANCE Carlos started a business through denmarkbrazil.com, but while his blog survives, he has left for pastures new and is now the head of strategic partnerships at Ucommerce, where he mainly deals with agencies in the Benelux countries. The roundtables host seeks to inspire many on a vast range of topics, from digital transformation and mental health to the future of work in the 4th industrial revolution.

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RECENTLY spoke to a very close, Brazilian-based friend over WhatsApp about the impact of the coronavirus on society in the coming months and years. He had an interesting point of view. For him, the Covid-19 is a hallmark in human history. Human beings are animals of deeply ingrained habits, he argues, and society will face a few changes in habits, as people become more generally aware of what might impact their health. He was sceptical, however, about this being a mere disruption, as there is currently neither a new economic model nor a new framework on how to do things from this point on. So for him, once a new vaccine is created there won’t be a new normal.

Warier than ever MY VIEWS, however, are opposed to his! I believe our behaviour is going to vary depending on each individual’s unique situation – for example, age groups, nationalities, and if people are in a risk group or not. People above the age of 60 or even youngsters, if in a risk group, might be way more considerate from this point forward.

Robust enough to stand firm?

The authorities, meanwhile, are presumably highly concerned there will be a second wave of infections. But they shouldn’t pin their hopes on a new vaccine anytime soon. It will need to be tested, and then retested, and then once it is approved it has to be produced on a large scale. This could take more than a year to happen, easily. To this point, 0.6 percent of the global population is infected, but we can’t count on these numbers since not everyone has been tested, and each and every country is taking its own measures. In Brazil, for example, where there are 46,000 confirmed cases and a lethality rale of 6.4 percent, specialists estimate that this number could be potentially 15x higher. So in the absence of a vaccine, I believe governments will be implementing measures to decrease the possibility of another hard wave of infections. China’s days numbered THE WORLD’S major economies probably realise they can no longer rely on China to be the exclusive manufacturer of virtually anything we depend on. In that sense, I believe and hope we can expect strong global policies benefiting the likes of Brazil, Mexico, and other emerging countries in Asia and Africa. But there will be a price to pay as trade agreements can be complex. We’ve learned from its recent trade war with the US that

China won’t go down without a fight. I don’t have a crystal ball, but I’m sure the world will no longer solely depend on China as its exclusive producer of anything important anymore. Changes for companies MANY COMPANIES have woken up to how going digital is a must. Those companies who have the luxury of being digital natives are probably going to thrive at this moment. Other companies who are not digital natives must reinvent their business models quickly. One example I came across recently happened to my dad. My dad has been manufacturing dress shirts for the past 30 years. He has a site where he employs around 150 people and he also has a number of shops that sell the shirts. But within just three weeks, everything changed for his business. The Brazilian government released a bill that forced all commercial and non-essential sites to be locked down. But since the government is also facing challenges to have enough medical supplies, they allowed other businesses to continue operating if they were willing and able to manufacture whatever is needed to cover the shortage. My dad has pivoted his entire business in three weeks and started manufacturing masks. He is one of the lucky ones, though, as many, many other small compa-

nies are facing a very challenging time right now. So I believe that companies and leaders who do not step up (if they can) or contribute are probably going to be remembered. Consumers will slowly become more aware of who to buy from – particularly if the company or brand they are buying from is currently contributing to society in some way, shape, or form. Time to reskill SO WHAT should you do if you are unemployed or struggling these days? This is the time to sharpen your skills – to learn that course you did not have time for. Online education is a sector that is booming. McKinsey published a piece in February 2020 on the challenges of reskilling, and it turns out that 43 percent of the companies that responded to the survey already face skill gaps. Business areas such as data and analytics, IT Mobile and web design, channel management, and ecommerce need people with sharp skills. Sure it’s good to learn on the job, but if the jobs are not there, then use the time you have wisely on platforms such as Coursera, LinkedIn or YouTube and find free courses to study. After all, the economy will be back, although it might take time. And when the companies have their budgets back, they’ll

start employing again, so make sure you’re ready. Practical measures IN THE meantime, the Coronavirus Crisis continues, and this means that if you still have a job but also have children at home, you’ll need to agree with your partner on when you work your shifts. For me what has worked really well is to work in short sprints. That means I have a to-do list for my day. I have also started to connect more with people. Yes, loads of catching up, or building relationships because the budgets will be back. And when they are back, people will remember who they are already familiar with. One last thing I began doing is ‘LIVES’ on Instagram. I have been connecting with leading experts and doing interviews both in English and Portuguese to discuss mindsets, entrepreneurship, health, and other topics to educate myself and my network. These have been fascinating, as while I get an opportunity to get inspired and learn something about something new, I’ve also been supporting my network with valuable content. So while there are terrible things happening globally due to the coronavirus, I must say we are all very fortunate to be in Denmark. Consider yourself lucky, but remember there are plenty of things you can do to help yourself and make the world a tiny bit better.

PIXABAY

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14 OPINION

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

30 April - 14 May 2020

MRUTYUANJAI MISHRA

Mishra’s Mishmash

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’D HAZARD a guess that not many internationals had heard of Sundhedsstyrelsen before the coronavirus lockdown. But now barely a day passes without another press conference presented by the Danish health authority, armed with yet more recommendations to ease us through the Coronavirus Crisis. Conflicting paths IT MUST be said that not all of its advice has been sound – in direct contrast to the Danish PM Mette Frederiksen who has trodden a steady path, consistently making sense throughout the crisis. No wonder her popularity is booming! Søren Brostrøm, the head of Sundhedsstyrelsen, has been constantly at loggerheads with ministers, health officials and, at times, the entire public. Often seen to be chewing a wasp on

As a regular contributor to the Times of India, the country’s largest newspaper, Mishra is often soughtafter by Danish media and academia to provide expertise on Asian-related matters, human rights issues and democratisation. He has spent half his life in India and the other half in Denmark and Sweden. the same stage as the politicians, he has questioned many of their decisions. And hindsight hasn’t been kind to his zig-zagging direction. Vehemently opposed to the government's ‘abrupt’ decision to enforce a total lockdown of schools and airports, Brostrøm forcefully argued that there weren’t enough studies, nor was there any proof that a lockdown would reduce the coronavirus infection rate in the long term. He favoured the Swedish model at first ... Years of practice BUT WHILE Sweden’s death toll has been far higher than its Scandinavian neighbours, it comes nowhere near to matching the same rates seen in southern European countries such as Spain and Italy. An explanation, perhaps, can be found in the social norms

of Scandinavia, as many of its inhabitants happily live in isolation. You could argue that they have been practicing social distancing for a long time, even in times of peace, and long before the Coronavirus Crisis came along. In Norway, when its own health authority advised the public to keep a minimum of two metres distance from one another, many people joked: “Do we have to get that close?” In many regions of Norway, one has to travel several miles before noticing the next property. In northern parts of Sweden, there is also a huge distance between people’s homes, while in sparsely populated Greenland, according to reliable sources, they haven’t had a new case of coronavirus for days. These are indications, there-

fore, that the spread of the virus is mostly contained in Scandinavia because normal life entails living apart from one another. And they’re not particularly chatty by nature either. The remote village existence might not be one of the more celebrated elements of the Scandinavian lifestyle, compared to hygge for example, but it is paying dividends now. In the quiet zone WHEN I lived in Sweden, I was always surprised on my daily train journey how passengers sat so quietly, neither conversing nor choosing seats adjacent to one another. Frequently I found myself checking whether I had stumbled into the quiet zone. People do not hug and kiss strangers when they meet them, and they do not socialise in the way they do in southern Europe, where big crowds often gather. The overall result is that social distancing has been easy to implement without much difficulty. The singles game IT’S ALSO worth noting that a large portion of the adult population in capital cities like Copenhagen and Stockholm live

as singles. In the Danish capital, around 40 percent do so, mostly in apartments. More than half of all Swedish households are single-person entities – the highest in the whole of the European Union. Again, this has made it easier to practise social distancing, which even Sundhedsstyrelsen would admit has been quintessential to curbing the number of infections. For some it’s been hard because their cities have become increasingly multicultural. But in reality, their lifestyle of sitting in cafes and bars is a newly learned social behaviour, acquired like many of their food habits from other cultures. Reconnecting with their agrarian roots, when far more people lived in remote and sparsely populated areas with limited contact with the world, is inherent in their DNA. Given the Scandinavian disposition to respecting one another’s personal space and human right to personal integrity, I feel that Sundhedsstyrelsen missed a golden chance to trust in society. Instead it introduced the rather alien concept of social distancing. Had it consulted anthropologists, it might have come up with a more human approach. REGERINGEN

As an Anglo reading of his name vaguely suggests, Brostrøm (left) specialises in gynecology


OPINION

30 April - 14 May 2020

WHITE HOUSE

IAN BURNS

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An Actor’s Life A resident here since 1990, Ian Burns is the artistic director at That Theatre Company and very possibly Copenhagen’s best known English language actor thanks to roles as diverse as Casanova, Shakespeare and Tony Hancock.

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ILL TRUMP’S teams of quacks win the vac race? What would Britain’s upper-class twits think of Mette Frederiksen’s decision to not compensate companies that don’t pay their taxes? There’s a lot to chew on during the Coronavirus Crisis. Beyond parody FORGET touting the tried and failed hydroxychloroquine (chlorine dioxide industrial bleach to you and me) treatment, King Trump I promoted injecting coronavirus patients with disinfectant to kill the virus. It’s beyond parody if he thinks he can utter such idiotic drivel without public rebuke. What's next? Incantations? Swallow light bulbs then stick a screwdriver in the wall socket? Standing in a bucket of water is optional. Dried badger droppings on toast? To claim afterwards that he was being sarcastic is difficult to believe. He tried and failed to sound intelligent by promoting a quack cure from dodgy geezers. End of.

Sweden’s cautionary tale BENJAMIN Franklin said that there were only two things certain in life: death and taxes. But he forgot about all the greedy bastards who register their companies overseas. Praise here to Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, who has told companies that do not pay their taxes that they will not be eligible for state financial aid bailouts. As things stand, Frederiksen has done extremely well across the board – particularly when you compare Denmark to its neighbours. Sweden’s relaxed, experimental approach to the virus might prove to be a bad choice – naïve at best with over 2,000 deaths so far. But time will tell whose path was the most successful. We will return! FORGET the space race, the race to find a Covid-19 vaccine is on. This is the world’s greatest challenge. The last two months have seen the beginning of a new way of interacting with the world. Working from home is possible

for many and will be the norm for many months if not years to come. Sadly, restaurants, cinemas, museums and theatres can’t do that, but one fine day we will be back. In our urge to return to an improved version of the planet I hope caution prevents opening everything up too soon – to undo all that would be tragic. Saluting the brave HEALTH and care workers deserve respect and it’s time for their efforts and risks to be recognised. Praise is also due to the people who deliver essential goods by road, rail or sea and the people who clean up after us. They all deserve to be rewarded with a dignified wage. Over in Britain, a decade of reducing financial support for the NHS left it woefully unprepared to cope with the outbreak, not least with a complete lack of personal protective equipment (PPE). Asking nurses to reuse PPE gear reminded me of the upper-class twit generals who daily sent thousands of men to certain death in World War I. Hundred

"How about human car washes, or ... come on Fucki, help me out here?"

years on, their continued retention of power doesn’t fill me with much confidence in an isolated post-Brexit Britain. I am happy that I live in Denmark. A time to reflect THERE have been stories of incredible kindness and courage during these anxious times. An example of Britain at its best is the now famous 99-yearold Captain Tom Moore (who will turn 100 a day after this issue goes to print), who raised 28 million pounds for the NHS by walking around his garden

with a zimmer frame. Meanwhile, over in Madrid, hospital workers thanked a taxi driver who had been driving them for free. Along with a whip-round and a standing ovation, they presented him with the negative results of his Covid-19 test. This period has given me time to reflect and I think I can say that I have lived a good life and that I am proud and happy of my achievements. My heart goes out to those whose lives have been cut short. Take care and stay safe.


16 OPINION

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

30 April - 14 May 2020 US AIR FORCE

ADRIAN MACKINDER

Mackindergarten British writer and performer Adrian Mackinder (adrianmackinder.co.uk) and his pregnant Danish wife moved from London to Copenhagen in September 2015. He now spends all his time wrestling with fatherhood, the unexpected culture clash and being an Englishman abroad. It’s been a busy six weeks for Adrian. In between working and looking after his two young children, he’s finished a book, celebrated a birthday, put his flat up for sale and even had time to compile some diary entries for his CPH POST column – almost as if the man was born to be locked down. But don’t be fooled, as a closer inspection reveals a man increasingly on the edge, ever drawn to the limits of his existence. March 11 WITH DENMARK now on lockdown, the mask of civilization starts to slip. The happiest people on Earth turn and eat each other. The welfare state transforms into a police state. Strings of Danish flags will be replaced by barbed wire. Hygge becomes hazmat. Quarantine zones erupt with hideous violence, with once-decent folk ripping each other to pieces over a single pastry. The seas boil, the skies fall. Christiania becomes a huge prison – a deep, yawning chasm pulsing with broken, seething, angry, drug-fuelled Danes. Blood lust will be satisfied via live prime-time competitive entertainment, played out on stolen TV sets powered by rats. From this fallen city, heroes will rise who will lead us from this nightmarish Babylon to a place of sanctuary ... That's what I'm hoping anyway. March 14 AS WE BEGIN two weeks in total lockdown, it’s vital to stay calm. Here are five top tips on how you and your family can make the enforced isolation more tolerable. 1. Read the dictionary out loud until the inevitable collapse into violence. Savour every punch.

2. Keep the kids occupied by signing them up to work multiple shifts at the supermarket. In Minsk. 3. Hide in the fridge until your partner opens the door, then scream ‘OH CHRIST NOT YOU AGAIN. STOP TELLING ME HOW TO LIVE MY LIFE!’ 4. Recreate key scenes from ‘The Battle of Algiers’ using whatever food you have left in the cupboard. 5. Teach yourself how to defeat a bear. Trust me, it WILL be useful. March 16 WHATEVER happened to quicksand? It was a big deal in the ‘80s. People got stuck in it on TV all the time. Now not so much. March 17 LOOK ON the bright side. Because all meetings now take place remotely via video, we can have a good old snoop into people's homes. March 18 HOW HARD is it working from home with kids? Put it this way. It's taken me 48 minutes to listen to a song that lasts just over four. March 19 WHAT I want to know is why are there so few cases in Russia and India, which border China for thousands of miles? And how can a country like China, with over a billion people, and traditionally underwhelming hygiene and food preparation records (relative to other developed countries), have contained this so quickly? Why has their economy now recovered suspiciously quickly while Europe is on its

knees. Are the Chinese now rapidly buying up shares, assets and investments in Western stock while we're busy staying inside? And why-oh-god-please-helpme-I've-been-stuck-inside-forthree-days-and-I-need-some-evidence-based-facts-before-my-addled-mind-lumbers-further-into-paranoid-conspiracy-theories. March 20 SIX MONTHS of dark, grey Danish winter. Now glorious sunshine, we all have to pretend we're in ‘The Shining’. March 28 WITH THE world going to hell in a handcart, only a fool would try to sell their home, right? We'll I'm that fool. If you know anyone interested in a piece of prime Copenhagen real estate so desirable and at such a bargain it would make Lex Luthor collapse with joy, then please share or recommend. March 29 A BELATED thank you to all who took the time out of your busy schedule to wish me a happy birthday. Those of you who know me will be aware I have trained my whole life for this lockdown. I grew up glued to the TV. I don't much care for being outdoors. I enjoy my own company. I know how to keep myself amused for weeks on end without leaving the house and I have no great itch to do anything physical other than pour a fifth gin. I could have ridden this out without breaking a sweat. In fact, when the pandemic lifts, I'd probably be the one person asking for another couple of days to prepare myself for

Overweight bear ... heading for the woods, obviously

interacting with society. March 31 JUST SENT my finished book to the publishers. Thanks to all who made it possible. Am now going to stay in and get wrecked. April 3 RIGHT now I'd happily start an aggressive and destructive drugs habit just for the stint in rehab #lockdownwithkids. April 9 I WENT for a run today. An actual run. I actually ran. And I was bad at it. Just terrible. Caught a glimpse of myself as I wheezed past a shop window. I looked like an overweight bear standing on its hind legs for the first time. How can this be? How can someone be bad at running? It's a basic human ability. We evolved to run. Fight or flight. I can't do either. Here I stand, a miracle of evolution. They should make a Netflix documentary about me. About my shocking inability to rapidly move my limbs. And I wasn't even wearing heavy tweed or holding a sherry. So I shall continue this endeavour until I have mastered the art of swift movement. Wish me luck. Donations welcome. Easter Sunday IT’S SO important to remember why we celebrate Easter. How, two thousand years ago, Jesus was sent to prison by a military court for a crime he didn’t commit. This man promptly escaped from a maximum-security stockade to the Lost Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, he survives as a soldier of fortune. If you have a problem, if no-one else

can help, and if you can find him, maybe you can hire … Jesus. April 15 HERE’S a thought. If you’re feeling anxious, stressed or scared. Stop watching the news. Stop reading articles about coronavirus. It’s not helping. It really isn’t. It doesn’t make us feel good. The press don't thrive on making us feel good. Never have. Never will. Currently there are too many stories floating around about how terrible things could be – rolling-news padding that serves as filler in between what scarce real news there truly is. And by ‘real news’, I mean information that will move things forward. And trust me. We’re so plugged in, anything productive that we need to know, we WILL hear about. Vaccines, antibody tests, the dead rising from the grave, you’ll be notified. In the meantime, absorbing endless charts of death or journalists and politicians politicising a pandemic will only trigger and fuel anxiety, anger and blame. Truth is we’re all still in stasis right now. That’s about it. Nothing has changed. The virus is here. It’s not going away. Many people are getting it. Some are dying. It’s horrible. We must be vigilant. So it goes. Anything else is purely emotive click-bait. So while we wait for things to progress, let’s just keep talking, stay in touch, and find the funny side wherever we can. So here’s the fish-slapping dance. April 19 YOU KNOW you need to exercise when you see a 'before/ after' gym ad and think: “I'd just be happy with the ‘before’ pic.”


OPINION

30 April - 14 May 2020

SIBYLLE DE VALENCE

Green Spotlight

T

HREE BILLION human beings have been forced to slow down. Although this pause is getting very expensive, it is not forbidden to taste its virtues and hope for a better future.

Revelations WITHIN only a few days of their lockdown, Venetians started sharing photos of clear waterways and fish in the lagoon. Satellite images have shown striking images of clear skies over some of the world’s smoggiest cities, such as Mumbai or Beijing. Pollution levels have fallen by 50 percent in New York. Many Indians can now enjoy views of the Himalayan peaks. Grass is growing between the ‘Sanpietrini’ cobblestones on the deserted Piazza Navona in Rome. Lions have been seen taking naps on empty roads usually busy with safari-goers in South Africa.

Sibylle is a French journalist, columnist and author who writes for a variety of French, English and Italian language publications, specialising on the green transition. Having lived and worked in San Francisco, Milan, Berlin, Rome, Calgary and Paris, she speaks five languages. Follow her on Instagram at sibdevalence Has Covid-19 given us a glimpse of what our world could be like if we carry on with some of the behavioral changes beyond the current pandemic? Social science researchers suggest that times of change can lead to the effective introduction of long-lasting habits. A wake-up call ALTHOUGH we all agree it’s the worst conceivable way to experience Mother Nature reclaiming its rights, we now know it’s time to smartly prepare our comeback. The pandemic has shown how fast most people can change their behaviour and adapt if it’s for the health of their families. Some of us have been trying to find an ideological meaning to this epidemic. But while some experts have identified worrying correlations between the coronavirus and heavy-polluted cities, it’s worth remembering that viruses are as old as life on Earth. Since 1945, we’ve had more than

our fair share of pandemics, with one in 1957 killing 2 million people, another in 1968 causing 1 million deaths, and a third in 2009 that was responsible for 280,000 deaths. Socially-responsible entrepreneurs across Europe are summoning their governments to lay out economic stimulus packages related to the deadly virus, which contain measures related to climate and environmental justice. Their main concern is to not repeat the past. They want to seize the opportunity to help our economies recover while becoming more resilient to the next crisis heading our way. Reclaim your time GLOBALISATION and climate change might only be symptoms of a deeper ailment: our perpetual exhausting need for speed. Low-cost flights and Globish (Global English) have resulted in many of us regularly orbit-

ing the globe in an unfulfilled quest for happiness. Over the past decades, we’ve seen our array of possibilities multiply. We wanted it all. The world was ours to explore. And we’ve been caught up in a frenzy to see it all – partly out of a fear we might miss out. Suddenly, in March 2020, our world paused. Stay home is the new mantra. Take your time. Be idle. Define your own rhythm. Disconnect from 24-hour news and social media that causes anxiety. Reconnect with what really matters: the life around you. Flexible working THE LOCKDOWN has now proved it’s possible and even, in some cases, more efficient to work remotely. In France or Italy, the virus has forced companies to finally embrace the digital era. People have adapted and innovated quickly. Before the outbreak, only 2 percent of employees in Italy were working remotely. Flexible working is key to curbing pollution in cities choking on unhealthy air. India has the highest number of pollution-linked deaths in the world, with more than 2 million people dying every year. Reclaiming the streets “WHENEVER feasible, consid-

17

er riding bicycles or walking,” the WHO recommended on April 21. A growing number of cities around the world are temporarily turning their roads over to walkers and cyclists to make room for social distancing, which can be challenging for pedestrians when the pavements are narrow. London, Manchester, Brighton, Vancouver, Calgary, Philadelphia, Budapest, Sydney, Berlin, Bogota and Mexico are all implementing people-friendly streets. And bike sales are booming as people look for alternative methods of transportation and exercise. Parisians are also equipping themselves to return to two wheels so they can avoid public transport, while the city has announced the conversion of 650 km of roads into cycle paths in time for May 11, when the lockdown should be eased in France. In the same vein, 35 km of city streets will be turned into car-free walkable and cyclable lanes in Milan, where the authorities are keen to stop millions of cars reclaiming the roads as soon as the lockdown is lifted. After all, air pollution is said to worsen the conditions of those infected. This all may be happening temporarily for now, but people could get used to it. There might be no going back. UN ENVIRONMENT

Have the courage to raise your head above the parapet and enforce change


18 INTERVIEW What men want? Let’s just say it isn’t being home 24/7 THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

BEN HAMILTON

C

ARDS ON the table time. Shania Twain’s song ‘Man! I Feel Like A Woman!’ never quite sold me. If the best she can do on a night out is ‘Men's shirts, short skirts’ and ‘Color my hair, do what I dare’, I’ll stay in and watch the football every night of the week. But even that hasn’t been possible during the coronavirus lockdown – these are

SEX

Name: James HW Ackroyd Nationality: British Age: 32

J

AMES RECENTLY created quite a stir on social media platforms with the short film ‘TP – A love story’, in which

THE PUB

Name: Paul McNamara Nationality: Irish Age: 36

PIXABAY

Or more accurately, what do they miss? And how are they coping with all the free time they now have on their hands?

30 April - 14 May 2020

taxing times for the men of Denmark. Fact: Men suffer more “FIRST-WORLD problems,” we hear you cry; well in case you haven’t opened your front window recently (which is highly unlikely given you’re always home), that’s exactly where Denmark is located. And if you happen to be a woman, hark at you and your reopened hairdresser saving your life last week. No, it’s undisputed. The men are suffering the most during this lockdown, and here’s the undeniable evidence. He often said he'd draw the curtains if Arsenal were playing in the garden, but seriously!

a young man gets romantically involved with an effigy made out of toilet paper. But how much of the inspiration was sourced from his own sex life? You’ve made a video about dating during the coronavirus lockdown. That’s quite a challenge, surely? Not so much, actually. I’ve been working remotely through the whole crisis, so I haven’t had the chance to retire to my sofa and drink myself into a daze. Also, most of the filmmaking I do is with a skeleton crew, albeit not one that requires the actor to film himself, but I’m still used to filming with little assistance. Like the character in your film,

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ITH HIS bulging biceps and effortless, sometimes devilish Irish charm, we’ve had a big man crush on Paul ever since he started working at The Globe six or seven years ago. In this community we call ours, he’s part of the fecking pub furniture! So how the hell has he been coping during the Coronavirus Crisis away from his natural habitat? After working at the Globe for years, you’re the manager of

you’re single and live alone. Lots of time to create, but not so much to procreate? It’s alright. I still have the head from my film. There’s not much conversation, but it gives me something to do. She’s called Loocy. The pubs and clubs are closed, and things are quiet on Tinder (so I’ve been told)? I actually cracked and downloaded Tinder a week before the lockdown happened. It’s hard to judge what it was like before, as I haven’t used it for years, but it seems pretty active. I’m guessing that people are taking out their sexual frustrations via their phones now ... sitting in the corner, a bottle of whisky Cafe Svejk, a bar in Frederiksberg. And you spend most of your spare time down the pub. Would it be fair to say you’re partial to pub culture? I wouldn't say I'm partial to pub culture. We've got a great community here in Copenhagen and that's a huge part of the reason why I decided to stay in Copenhagen in the long run. The pub just happens to be the easiest place for us all to be in one place, and of course beer helps to grease the wheels.

in one hand, the other furiously swiping away at anything with a face. I think that’s why I’ve had so many matches: desperation. What’s a young, single, available, talented filmmaker supposed to do? Pour themselves into their work, I guess. The world has become a captive audience for all sorts of content – more so than before. People have nothing better to do, so they’re watching more. Now is a great time to create. Take those sexual frustrations and channel them into something that isn’t constant masturbation. We are going through a toilet paper shortage after all. All I’m suggesting is that a So what’s it like not being able to go to your favourite place in all the world? Fortunately I live right over the bar I run. So I've managed to have one or two of the fellas around for a sneaky beer – of course whilst standing two full metres from one another. The problem is not me being able to go – it’s having to say no to everyone else. What have you been spending your time doing instead? I recently started running again –

single man living on his own might struggle to meet potential new girlfriends. Would you agree? I don’t think so. We’re great at adapting. People crave companionship and we’ll always find a way to satisfy that need. Communication hasn’t stopped. In fact, I’d say that communication has seen a boost. We’re reaching out more, video calling people who we haven’t called for years. Relationships are still forming, albeit in a different way from before. Maybe we’re seeing a permanent change in the way that we date. although saying that, I wouldn’t want to get tasked with cleaning the pub toilets that first weekend after everything opens up again. normally around midnight when thankfully nobody is around to see how slow I am. But other than that, lots of reading and an inordinate amount of time on social media, which has provided a grateful tool to catch up with old friends I haven't spoken to in years. Any plans for the future that you didn’t have two months ago? Best I put some of this running to use ... Maybe, maybe some half-marathons ... Maybe.


30 April - 14 May 2020

CROSSFIT

Name: Thomas Styrk Nationality: Danish Age: 43

WATCHING FOOTBALL Name: Anders Nash Nationality: British-Danish Age: 40

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OST MEN who travel widely have a girl in every port, but happily-married Nash, having ticked that box following an extended stay in South America, tends to adopt football clubs instead. Would you describe yourself as the kind of football addict that goes into mourning every

INTERVIEW

A

S HIS SURNAME suggests, Thomas was born to be strong, while his favourite hobby suggests he’s liable to get cross if he can’t stay fit. In truth, the lockdown hasn’t hampered his efforts as much as other fitness fanatics. In fact, with the really good weather, it’s got to the point where going indoors again will be mildly disappointing. Your neighbour tells us you’re the person in the know if you want to try out crossfit. How long have you been doing it? summer? Only in the odd years. The even year numbers are the best ones, with Euros and World Cups. Having said that, I lived in Latin America with my wife for six years so even many of the odd years were filled with the Copa America, but the flame didn’t burn within me to quite the same level. My Premier League team has flattered to deceive for too many years now, so the season tends to be a period of suffering. You must be waking up, reaching for your phone to check the sports results, and then … How are you coping with the sense of loss? Goodness, I still am. It’s just instinctive isn’t it. To all of us. I used to love checking my phone every morning in the men's favourite room – the only time for any peace in a family household! South American matches happened in the middle of the night for us here in Denmark, so the he’d turn out for the under-9s girls team if he could. But it doesn’t necessarily make him a football addict? The lockdown presumably has the answer.

PLAYING FOOTBALL Name: Martin O’Rourke Nationality: British-Irish Age: 52

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HEY CALL Martin ‘Mr Football’ at Copenhagen Celtic. Over-18s, over-45s,

So how long’s it been since your last game? Last game was March 1 and last training was March 8. There was a lot of embracing at training as old teammates met up with friends around the club. That wouldn’t be happening now. You must miss it terribly? I miss it a lot. I go running regularly, but it doesn’t have those same visceral highs that football,

I have been doing crossfit for eight years now. I usually work out six days a week – I enjoy the energy it gives me. It helps me to calm down when I am stressed and it makes me sleep much better. My wife also started doing crossfit three years ago, and since then we enjoy crossfit together. We hear you compete internationally in some disciplines? Yes, several times in Denmark against international athletes. It’s always fun to compete and push yourself that little bit further. I also mornings were the only time to catch up on them. Frankly nothing can offset that feeling of loss. I still reach for that phone and hope this is all a dream. But alas it isn't. How are you filling in the time? Well, the whole period with the virus has been surreal for everyone. My wife Lisbeth and I have kids aged two and four, Theis and Maya. Juggling work, the kids being at home and regular daily life has been, let us just say, enlightening. Having said that, our two-year-old Theis is mad about football. He has quite a left foot on him, so I try to channel him into focused training: weaving in and out of cones in the back garden and finishing top bin! I have filled the remainder of my time brainwashing him into supporting the same rubbish teams as Dad (see photo). The best bit is he is too young to be accused of being a full-kit w*nker so I with all of its one-on-one combats and fluctuations of fast and slow, gives you. To put it another way, it’s tedious. Your wife must be delighted: what are you doing with all the spare time you must have? It’s a mixed bag for my wife. I’m definitely much more available than say, for example, when my team Leeds United are on the TV, but she knows how much football means to me. It’s not just the physical. There are the psychological benefits too. But it does mean I’m just as available on a Saturday afternoon as other days to change the baby’s

participated in the Danish national championships in weightlifting. It must be gruelling not being able to go to your local crossfit club. How have you been coping? In the beginning it was really hard not to be able to do the crossfit I love with friends – home workouts are never as intense when I don’t have anybody to compete with. But after a couple of weeks, my wife and I joined a small group of crossfitters that we do workouts with. We work out together can deck him out in all the right clobber until he knows any better. I've also been busy trying to get on the line to Ajax and Barcelona to tie his future up, but it is proving futile – lamentably I'm having more luck doing ballet with our daughter Maya on the trampoline. Sometimes she lets me wear her tutus. Any tips for your fellow football nuts? I would encourage them to consider supporting grassroots football again. When things start to return to normal, these clubs are where the future top stars are bred. The big leagues are financially killing small clubs, which are more authentic and fun anyway. I'm really keen on grass roots footy. In fact a few of us lads from Copenhagen Celtic are: I like to follow Brønshøj in the second division whilst some of the others follow other historical Danish clubs such as Fremad Amnappy, take out the recycling, throw together a Michelin star meal etc ... When Bex’s outfit are told they might be banned from football at the end of ‘The Firm’, they say they’ll go to the boxing, to the snooker, and to the darts. How much longer will it take until you find another sport? Ha! Never seen the film but I get the sentiment. There’s no other options right now and as for virtual, that will never happen. Nope. I’ll be waiting until football is re-established and then pushing those 52-year-old legs

19

almost every day outside – but we try to keep our distance and never exceed 10 people. We have been very lucky with the weather so far, and it’s safe to say we will miss the outside experience once we get back to the gym. How do you intend to celebrate when the lockdown ends? Mostly by just doing a lot of the exercises we can’t do now. Barbell work and some gymnastic work on the rings will be my preferred celebration when the lockdown ends. ager and Frem. It's such a cracking day out and for the most part REALLY child-friendly. The proof's in the pudding: tickets at Brønshøj are free for kids and 80 kroner for grown-ups, which often includes a free hot dog or a beer. Kids can run around in an enclosure on the side of the pitch with other kids, so you can blissfully ignore them, drink a beer and watch sub-par footballers kicking lumps out of each other ... as football should be. It really is bliss. I understand you’re an Arsenal fan – so presumably you won’t have any objection to 2019/20 being expunged from the record books. What?! I'm gutted. We had definitely turned things around and were going to qualify for the Champions League! Brønshøj are also looking to hold on to second place in the second division and hopefully duke it out for promotion. as fast as they will carry me and coming back for more. So are you a football addict? Yes, I just can’t help it! I’m a football addict in every sense of the word. I was the kid who spent hours pouring over the Sunday papers examining all the permutations in the league table and whether a 17-win streak for Leeds might allow them to snatch the title from a mid-league position in March. Pathetic I know, but I was always able to convince myself it could happen – much to the derision of schoolmates on a Monday morning after the latest hammering.


20 FEATURE

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

30 April - 14 May 2020

Students taking on their landlords amid the Coronavirus Crisis UCHF Tenants Organisation has been set up to address all immediate concerns, while also paving the way for more transparency in the future LAURA MOLLOY

A

S THE CORONAVIRUS pandemic continues to uproot lives across the world, countless individuals are finding themselves facing an unprecedented economic burden. Changing circumstances AMONG those devastated by the virus are students, who now must complete their education under unfamiliar circumstances, while simultaneously juggling new-found unemployment and countless financial responsibilities. A group of over 600 international students and sympathisers in Copenhagen have joined forces in an effort to alleviate part of the stress that has occurred as a result of the crisis. The group, which goes by the name ‘UCHF Tenants Organisation’, aims to negotiate with their landlord, the University Of Copenhagen Housing Foundation, to instil special measures during this period. Quite the monopoly ESTABLISHED with the intention of assisting international students, the Housing Foundation offers a solution to those facing the great difficulty of finding temporary accommodation in Copenhagen. For students seeking accommodation in the city, it is an almighty struggle. Thus the foundation, which operates as a non-profit, is the only option for thousands of exchange students in their search for housing. This is a notable concern for the UCHF campaign co-ordinator, Laura Dickinson. “If you opt to rent a private residence, it’s very easy to get scammed,” she said. “The housing foundation knows it has a monopoly on the market.”

Dickinson is among ten lead organisers who are utilising whatever skills they have in their action against the Housing Foundation. “We just want to get people involved, no matter how little experience they have. That’s what community union is all about,” she said. Empowering the angry THE ORGANISATION has three main demands, each voicing the most popular concerns of students hit by the crisis. “We are representing people who have lost their jobs and therefore cannot pay rent, people who have left the country due to the crisis and need their contracts cancelled, and people who have had common areas like kitchens shut and need some kind of refund,” explained Dickinson. The group has already garnered the attention of hundreds who are discontented with the service, along with those who are worried about the prospect of late fees if they are unable to afford rent in this chaotic period. Dickinson’s own motivations stem from a desire to “empower” those who are under stress. “People are crying out for an organisation like this, and they’re angry,” she contended. Back home, “defeated” NIAMH O’Kelly, 21, is among hundreds seeking a response from the Housing Foundation. Like many worldwide, O’Kelly lost her job as a result of the government lockdown, leaving her in a state of financial uncertainty – almost overnight. Encouraged by her embassy to return home, the politics student had no choice but to wait out the crisis in her native Ireland, thus temporarily abandoning her accommodation. Despite initial hopes to receive unemployment benefits, O’Kelly was “defeated” to discover that, upon leaving the country, she was no longer eligible for the scheme. “I’ve worked since September

and paid taxes, but now I get nothing,” she said. “I don’t get SU, I’ve lost my job, I can’t get benefits and I can’t get a new job in the middle of a pandemic.” One-line response THOUGH she had hoped for sympathy from the Housing Foundation, O’Kelly’s attempts to negotiate were unsuccessful – leading her to join the tenants organisation. “I emailed them to express my concerns before my rent was due and asked if there was anything they could do to help, but they wouldn’t even give me an extra week,” she revealed. “I told them about my situation and that I was struggling to even feed myself and in return got a one-line response.” Following negotiations, the Housing Foundation allowed O’Kelly to split her rent into three separate payments rather than an upfront cost, yet she remains dissatisfied with her treatment, saying: “I thought that because they are a foundation for students they would be understanding, but they just made things really hard.” “We must act responsibly” YET, THE Housing Foundation remains adamant it cannot succumb to the demands of the UCHF. “All our contracts must be based on a standard contract authorised by the Danish Ministry of Housing,” explained Housing Foundation head Søren Peter Hvidegaard Jensen. “The Rental Act, as well as the rental contract, contains no provisions on termination without notice. Therefore, the contract cannot be terminated without any notice.” Those in similar situations to O’Kelly are encouraged by the Housing Foundation to contact insurance companies to request financial assistance. “It is our tenants’ own responsibility to have the necessary insurance coverage,” added Jensen.

Laura Dickinson warns of scams, monopolies and legal action

The Housing Foundation also insists that, in normal circumstances, there is a possibility for tenants to terminate contracts early. However, it depends on another tenant wanting to rent the room – something that is extremely unlikely during a pandemic. In regards to reducing rental costs for those unable to access all facilities, Jensen explained: “If we reduced the rent for some of our tenants it would result in a higher rent for others, and that is not acting responsibly.” Legal option HOWEVER, the tenants organisation is keen to point out that establishments in other countries who have made allowances for

international students during this crisis, such as the KU Leuven in Belgium and the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. “We’ve spoken to other students in countries where this has happened, so why not here?” revealed Dickinson. According to Dickinson, the organisation is prepared to take the legal route. “We know we have legal grounds and have spoken to lawyers who say we have a case,” she revealed. But, regardless of whether their goal is achieved or not, they are keen to carry on the momentum and represent international students for years to come, making sure they are more knowledgeable of their rights in the future.

Putting a brave face on it, Niamh O'Kelly is exasperated


21 EU students in Denmark caught in a bind on SU relief FEATURE

30 April - 14 May 2020

MIK HARTWELL

Are the likes of the University of Copenhagen merely fair weather friends to foreign students?

Thousands left helpless by coronavirus restrictions that have prevented them from fulfilling eligibility conditions

“If you do not meet the conditions for being a worker … we will discontinue your SU, and if you have received too much SU, you must pay back this amount.”

NATHAN WALMER

A

S THE CORONAVIRUS Crisis drags on, many people’s employment, financial standing, or even their housing situations have come under serious threat by its impact. Some EU students living and studying in Denmark at a higher education institution who have come to rely on its state education aid program, Statens Uddannelsesstøtte (SU), have experienced a domino effect on all fronts upon losing their jobs. In order to be considered of equal status to Danish citizens under EU law and thus eligible to receive SU assistance, EU students must have either resided in Denmark for five or more years or fulfilled certain conditions as a worker. These conditions involve working a minimum 10-12 hours per week and 43 hours monthly for a continuous period of 10 weeks, and per the SU website:

Insult to injury MANY EU students who take advantage of this program work part-time and in the service industries – often the first jobs to have been slashed amid the coronavirus restrictions as companies have scrambled to rein in costs. Pressure mounted to begin laying off such workers en masse after PM Mette Frederiksen announced a lockdown of most shops and restaurants on March 11. As a result of losing their jobs, they have been unable to satisfy the conditions for being considered a worker and have begun receiving bills from SU for the repayment of financial aid issued to them. The amount of the bill, determined by the number of weeks and months they have failed to meet the required work hours, has come to the tune of tens of thousands of kroner for those affected. This has put tremendous pressure on EU students who

are otherwise not eligible for government assistance as foreign citizens nor for any of the Coronavirus Crisis rescue packages implemented by the Danish government, as they are not available to part-time workers. As full-time students, many are left under these circumstances with no income to fall back on while still juggling their rent and now a hefty bill from SU. SU COVID-19 policy SU ON ITS website acknowledges that the coronavirus outbreak is an extraordinary situation and that it will take this into account in its ongoing assessment of a student’s status as a worker under EU law. “As a rule, you can maintain your status as a worker during the period in which official recommendations from Danish authorities to reduce the spread of COVID-19 can implicate that you cannot work. We currently consider this period to be from mid-March 2020 to the end of June 2020,” the COVID-19 notice on its website states. “As a rule, after this period, we expect you to continue your work.”

The notice is not as reassuring for those whose contracts have been terminated altogether. It reiterates that you can in some cases maintain your status as an EU worker for a period of time after termination, but that you must: “1/ Provide documentation showing that you have become involuntarily unemployed; 2/ Have registered as a job seeker at your local job centre; and 3/ Meet the job centre’s standard job search requirements.” In any case, you must also prove that you have satisfied the condition of continuous employment leading up to your work stoppage. This is not possible for many who began their work in 2020 as the coronavirus outbreak first started severely impacting economies around the world in early February. “We, as a starting point, expect that you as a minimum have worked 10-12 hours each week in a consecutive period of 10 weeks leading up to when you stop working,” added the SU website. Online advocacy IT IS DIFFICULT to say how

many EU students have been made to pay back their SU under these circumstances, but if the outpouring of consternation online is any indication, then there are many. Thousands of members of Facebook groups like ‘Coronaknibe’ and, ironically enough, ‘I study in Denmark and do not get SU’ have been reaching out for legal guidance on SU repayments, whilst sharing online petitions and imploring fellow members to contact the Ministry of Higher Education and Science with their stories. In the same way the Danish government has initiated a pause on the so-called ‘225-hour work rule’ for Danish nationals in order to receive unemployment benefits, online activists and those affected have been calling on the Danish government to temporarily waive the continuous work and 10-hours-a-week conditions for SU. For the time being, EU students in Denmark will have to grapple with the weight of an SU repayment bill over their heads while also attempting to focus on their studies. Some may have to consider returning to their home countries.


22

ON SCREENS

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

30 April - 14 May 2020

Retiring types and wild roses BEN HAMILTON

F

OR EVERY Daniel Day Lewis or Joaquin Phoenix, actors who petulantly announce their retirement every cycle (we mere mortals only exist in their orbits) to bring gavitas to the film they decide to make their comeback in, there are many who remain retired and dead to us – it doesn’t say much for their talent that we barely miss them at all. Gone are the days when the really big names kept on working into their graves, heroically battling cancer of the mouth with a Chesterfield tremulously hanging from their top lip as their lines were dubbed by a RSC student, destined to one day be a really difficult answer in a quiz. Jack Nicholson will never give up womanising, but acting … he dispensed with that years ago. He hasn’t made a film since 2010, apparently because he kept on forgetting his lines, but that can happen to the best of us after a hard night partying with the Bolivian marching powder. Gene Hackman, anyone? Exactly … 2004 was the last time he buckled up, a year after Sean Connery called it a day. In the absence of the retiring stars of the 1960s and 70s, the crusty parts are increasingly being filled by those who cornered the adult male roles in the 1980s, and often it feels as if the likes of Jeff Bridges, Kurt Russell and Richard Dreyfuss are playing parts ten years too old for them. Dog grooming – the worst kind ANOTHER such actor is Nick Nolte, who has been cast alongside Matt Dillon (along with another incomprehensible role for Emily Mortimer and her plummy voice) in Head Full of Honey (22 on Metacritic; May 4, Netflix), as a patriarch with Alzheimer’s disease who is taken on a trip to Venice to unclog some memories. We’re not sure the whimsical approach won it many fans. The same was true of Show

Dogs (31; May 17; Netflix), which already had one of the worst plots of all time. A policeman and his dog go undercover and enter the US equivalent of Crufts. Even worse, there are talking dogs (so it’s basically a film for children). And even worse, it contains a scene in which the dog has to grin and bear it when the judge touches its genitalia, which many concur sends out a message to kids that they should do a similar thing if an adult touches them in this way. From the worst to the best, we have Wild Rose (80; May 28; cinemas if they’re open), which like Head Full of Honey was first released in 2018, starring Jessie Buckley as a Scottish woman harbouring a dream to become a country and western singer in Nashville. In Irish actress Buckley, who first became famous after nearly winning the Andrew Lloyd-Webber singing contest show I’d Do Anything in 2008 (left in photo) and has since appeared in Chernobyl and Judy, cinema has discovered a true star with unlimited potential. Giving Rose a fair old war of the roses is Emma Rose, the firsttime director of Saint Maud (76; May 28; cinemas), another horror film championed by A24, a US producer carving out a niche with unlikely choices such as The Witch, Hereditary and Midsommar. Danny Boyle remarks that this tale of a care worker who might just be possessed has “confidence that evokes the ecstasy of films like Carrie and The Exorcist.” We want black Boardwalk! THE FILM Superfly (52; May 10; Netflix) also owes a debt to 1970s cinema, but not classic horror. However, even the always wonderful Michael K Williams can’t rescue this blaxploitation remake from the shallow end of the pool. More promising is contemporary black gangsta thriller All Day and a Night (May 1; Netflix), which includes

Long before MeToo#, ‘I’d do Anything’ was poorly named. Fortunately Lord Webber is the original Nancy’s boy

Williams’ old Boardwalk Empire sparring partner Jeffrey Wright in the cast. A notch above is Betty (May 8; HBO Nordic), a New Yorkbased female skating series that continues the story of the 2016 film Skate Kitchen with the same director, Crystal Moselle (The Wolfpack), onboard. While The Eddy (May 8; HBO Nordic), which follows the exploits of a black musician trying to make a living in Paris, also looks promising. Damien Chazelle (La La Land, Whiplash) directs the first two episodes. Staying with the gangsters, British series White Lines looks like it could be a lot of fun. Twenty years after the disappearance of her ghastly superstar DJ brother on Ibiza, Zowie (Laura Haddock) starts to glue the pieces together. Made by Álex Pina, the creator of popular Spanish show Money Heist, Daniel Mays co-stars in what could be a riot on a par with the best of Nick Love. The men from ‘About a Boy’ OVERALL this month’s crop of television is dominated by the US, although there are of course quite a few British actors stealing roles from their American cousins. Hugh Grant is back in The Undoing (May 11; HBO Nordic), a psychological thriller miniseries directed by Denmark’s very own Susanne Bier, which stars Nicole Kidman as a woman

who has been accused of, you know, important stuff that is unclear in the trailer. Grant’s co-star in About a Boy, Nicholas Hoult, lends Elle Fanning able support in The Great (May 16; HBO Nordic), a darkly comical look at the rise to power of Russia’s most famous ever tsarina. It looks deadly funny. John Hannah has gravitated to an old sage role in Transplant (May 11; CMore), a new hospital drama that could be the next ER. The title partly refers to the central character’s switchover from a hospital in Syria. And a promising May is completed by murky financial drama Devils (May 10; CMore), Ryan Murphy’s ambitious 1940s-set tinseltown politics series Hollywood (May 1; Netflix), in which he again teams up with Darren Criss, the star of The Assassination of Giani Versace, and Space Force (May 29; Netflix), which is being billed as a continuation of the vibe of The Office (with Steve Carrell), but in outerspace. Turdier most Fowl ELSEWHERE, among the returning series we have Penny Dreadful: City of Angels (S4; April 27 – a spin-off from the original with Natalie Dormer taking over from Eva Green), Billions (S5; May 4), Miracle Workers (S2; May 14) and Doom Patrol on HBO Nordic, and Dead to Me (S2; May 8), Dynasty (S3; May 23) and

Workin’ Moms (S4; May 6) on Netflix. No trailer was available to judge whether Sweet Magnolias (Netflix; May 19) is as sickly sweet as the film it stole part of its title from. While Jerry Seinfeld: 23 Hours to Kill (May 5; Netflix) sounds like it might be a day overlong. And we also have quite a few unpromising looking films, starting with Greyhound (May 7; at cinemas), a WWII sea yarn starring Tom Hanks. With all the CGI onboard, The Polar Express looks more life-like. Like a Boss (33; May 7; at cinemas) sounds a little too like one of our puff business features. A couple of business owners get a new investor … yawn! While Artemis Fowl (May 28; at cinemas) confidently strolls into that realm of fantasy that only ever delivers duds: kids playing as adults fiction. Both films look like utter crap. The Woman in the Window (May 14; at cinemas), a Rear Window remake that stars Amy Adams, Julianne Moore, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Gary Oldman, does look promising, but we’ll reserve judgement. And the same goes for romcoms The Lovebirds (May 22; Netflix), The Half of It (May 1; Netflix) and Stargirl (60; May 19; HBO Nordic). It’s a bit like when one of your favourite actors comes out of retirement: best to see their work before you start celebrating.


ENGLISH JOB DENMARK Recruitment Announcements Part of The Welcome Group MANAGER OF GROUP FINANCIAL CONTROLLING, BASICO

COMMERCIAL MANAGER, EUROPEAN ENERGY

Location: Deadline: Contact:

Location: Deadline: Contact:

You are expected to play a key role in the process of transforming the Financial Controlling processes, deliverables and services into having a best-in-class approach and to support the strategic transformation of the ISS Group. Søborg When filled Staffing & Recruitment, info@basico.dk

BUSINESS LINE DIRECTOR, PROFESSIONAL AUDIO VISUAL DISPLAY SOLUTIONS BUSINESS DIVISION, EET GROUP

You will have overall responsibility for achieving the sales and profit targets for the ProAV Business Unit and creating the highest return for both EET and the vendor. While responsible for profitable revenue growth, this is a sales enablement position. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Birkerød When filled job.businessline@eetgroup.com

SENIOR PRODUCT DESIGNER CORE, UNITY TECHNOLOGIES

In this role, you will be design owner for the area of core workflows, shaping the day-to-day experience of millions of users for the areas of file management, creative collaboration and on-demand loading. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Copenhagen When filled https://careers.unity.com/

To advertise your vacancy here and reach 60,000+ readers weekly, contact: info@englishjobdenmark.dk or call 6070 2298. For more information about what we can offer: https://englishjobdenmark.dk/

ENGLISH JOB DENMARK

We are looking for a commercial manager to join our operations team who is taking the leading role in the commercial and technical management of our Renewable Energy projects right from the commencement of commercial operation. Søborg When filled Milena Uchorczak, HR Consultant, miu@europeanenergy.dk

PROCESS ENGINEER FOR OUR R&D PILOT PLANT, COLOPLAST Grab this opportunity to join the Pilot Conversion team and take part in the entire development process from design phases to transferring knowledge to our international volume sites. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Copenhagen When filled Sara Niemann, Team Manager, +45 4911 1108

SENIOR CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY SCIENTIST, NOVO NORDISK

You will be offered exciting opportunities to increase your experience within clinical pharmacology and to expand your competencies within the clinical trial life cycle from planning through conduct to finalisation. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Søborg 12 May 2020 Charlotte Keller Steensber, +45 3079 1641

HEAD OF CORPORATE RELATIONS, NORDICS, DIAGEO This role works alongside the Europe Regional Corporate Relations (CR) Team, the market GM and other internal stakeholders on all pillars of CR activity across the Nordics. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Copenhagen When filled www.diageo.com/en/careers/

GENERAL MANAGER, HEARING AID EXPORT, DEMANT

To maintain and strengthen the market position and market share across multiple different geographies and different hearing aid brands, we are looking for an experienced leader with a 10-15 years successful track record of driving commercial strategy in an international context. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Smørum 31 May 2020 Søren Høgsberg, Vice President, International Sales, +45 2537 4683

SENIOR QUALITY PROFESSIONAL TO MANAGE API SUPPLIERS, LEO PHARMA You will be quality responsible for Suppliers of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) and Raw Materials globally and drive related activities within Supplier Quality Management. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Ballerup 8 May 2020 Eva Møller, Senior Manager, External Manufacturing & Suppliers Quality, + 45 5352 6265

EMBEDDED SOFTWARE ENGINEERS, SILICON LABS

Are you a real gadget geek, looking for the chance to create cutting edge automation technologies? This is the chance to be at the absolute forefront of IoT development. Location: Deadline: Contact:

Copenhagen When filled Recruitment, +45 3913 0000

EMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE FOR EXPATS

Finding a job in Denmark is not always easy – especially if you don’t speak Danish. The Welcome Group holds employment courses, workshops and webinars designed to help you find paid employment & guide you through the job process in Denmark. For more information & to register

Working together with internationals and companies to better understand the needs of one another. The Welcome Group has created this page and provides additional services, including an online community supporting employment for internationals on Facebook.


24

EVENTS

THE COPENHAGEN POST | CPHPOST.DK

30 April - 14 May 2020

Low - Fi music concerts ongoing, various times & various artists; online; 25kr, lowficoncerts. com Low - Fi assembles musicians and singers from all corners of the world for live shows in Copenhagen, creating unique and intimate experiences for music lovers. At this critical time, Low - Fi has arranged a series of online concerts on their Facebook page to entertain people. The accomplished musicians are from various parts of Europe, presenting intense and admirable online concerts from their living rooms. This also brings an opportunity for music lovers to support the community at this difficult time. (NG)

Online Slovak wine tasting April 30, any time; online; 350kr, eventsonline.dk Sample a taste of spring from Slovakia! Lovely floral and fruity spring Slovak wines will be delivered to your doorstep if you participate in this virtual wine tasting organised by the Sanitra Wine company. In a streamed event Martin, the founder of Sanitra Wine, will introduce a selection of three wines, two white and one rose, from one of the company’s premium series: Elesko. Ticket price includes three bottles of wine for two to three people and delivery. Also included is a tasting list with special discounts for future orders. (VG)

Stay Home Party Vol 3 May 2, 13:00-23:55; online; free adm, vielsker.dk When the party from Forum Copenhagen comes straight to your living room it is awesome! Claimed to be the biggest stay at home party in the world, the musical group Vi elsker is regenerating the 1990s. With a great line-up of DJs, the party promises to be one of a kind. There’s no better way to shed boredom than partying hard with thousands joining you virtually. (NG)

Bar 1420´s Quarantine Quiz May 5, 19:00; live on Facebook and Instagram page Take the couch and grab your favourite drink for an exciting quiz with Bar 1420. They have been entertaining people with this fun event every Tuesday since the start of the lockdown. Including 50 new questions every time, participation is free, although the bar appreciates donations. From the donations, they select one winner who gets a gift coupon of 200kr. (NG)

ICC Intensive workshop May 2-23, 12:00-14:00; 695kr, tickets@improvcomedy.eu ICC Theatre Improv Comedy Copenhagen and CIIF are running a four-week intensive program where you learn to improvise and acquire hosting skills. Hosting game shows and programs require prominent skills, and the course will offer details in these areas. Advanced students who have completed Improv level 2 or more, or have a year’s improv experience, are also invited. (NG)

Livestream Balkan Concert May 7, 20:00; free live stream from Bjonko’s & Råhuset’s Facebook page Warm up your living room with the Balkan beats from Bjonko, an accomplished clarinet player who brought Balkan beats to the Nordics and has been acclaimed by Gaffa and many other established musical groups. During the live stream, two winners will be selected to watch Bjoko’s concert in December. (NG)

Louisiana channel – 750 meets with the art ongoing, anytime; free adm; channel.louisiana.dk While Louisiana remains closed until May 10, explore 750 videos profiling artists, architects, writers and more on its channel. The museum’s virtual 24-hour ‘wing’ is always open to inspire us with art, literature, music, architecture and design. All the videos are in English. (VG)

Virtual Painting & Drinks Event at Your Home May 2, 14:00-16:00; 119kr, artnsips.ticketbutler.io Until we get back to normal social life, do not let any virus ruin the fun! Artnsips invites everyone to a fun artistic meeting for the whole family where you can learn how to create your own featured painting through step-by-step interactive instructions. The event will be taught in English. (VG)

Yoga flow & company class May 6 & 13; 10:00-11:00 & 17:00-18:00; donation-based, min 40kr Start your day with smooth yoga flow and body movements with DeLeónCompany, a Copenhagen-based contemporary dance company founded in 2013. Break the body’s physical limitations and rediscover yourself. Write an email to info@deleoncomp.com to take part via Zoom. (VG)

Art Workshop in Copenhagen May 3 &10, 10:00; Art.workshop. copenhagen.com The cosy art workshops are hosted every Sunday for two hours, and a series of workshops are lined up over May and June. One can be soulfully creative with colours, collages, monotypes and more. They offer personalised classes, as well as classes in groups. Classes are offered in English, Spanish and Italian. (NG)

Yoga & handstands ongoing, ends May 25, 19:0020:00; 80kr, rort.dk Join the virtual studio of Rört and follow a flowy yoga sequence warming up your entire body and challenging your core. The classes take place online every Monday evening. Sign up via rort.dk/schedule and then go to rort.dk/online 10 minutes before the class starts. (VG)

Tivoli summer season May 11; Tivoli, Vesterbrogade 3, Cph V; 60-135kr, tivoli.dk Tivoli is on May 11 finally opening its doors for its summer season, which lasts until October 4. The flower bushes are in full bloom. Don’t miss the Saturday fireworks show. Just remember to follow the hygiene and social distancing guidelines. (VG)

Kayak Republic courses May 2; Kayak Republic, Børskaj 12, Cph K; various prices, kayakrepublic.dk Get ready for some water activity! Kayak Republic is open from May 2, inviting everyone to try its sea kayaking intro course and then tour the capital’s beautiful canals, offering a safe, fun experience under strict hygiene practices in these challenging times. (VG)

At home with Ray & Savannah May 10, 21:00; live on Ray’s Facebook page; free adm, donations to Embolc mental health foundation Like many internationals marooned in Denmark, Ray Weaver won’t be able to spend Mother’s Day with his Mom (84, and still going strong), so instead the celebrated American pub singer is teaming up with his daughter Savannah to pay tribute. (BH)

Dance at home April 30, 17:00-18:00; donation-based, MobilePay 2892 2247 Do you miss dancing, and not just the physicality but the happy music and party atmosphere? Try dancing Zumba at home with Claire and transform your living room into a dancing hall. Set your speakers up and follow the event through Zoom. (VG)

Researcher Lunches April 30, May 6 & 8, 12:00 -15:15; free adm, Facebook page At this researcher lunch (in English) topics such as the coronavirus, the role of China in the world and the financial crisis will be discussed. The event is led by SAMRåd and the Department of Social Sciences & Business at Roskilde University. (VG)

Online meditation - Beyond Mindfulness May 5 & 12, 19:00; 50kr, fpmt.dk Let former Buddhist monk and psychotherapist Stephan Pende teach you easy-to-learn meditation techniques at this online ‘Beyond Mindfulness’ event. The event is suitable for beginners as well as those with experience. (NG)

Toastmasters Meet-up May 12, 18:00; meet at zoom. us/j/447996558 Enhance your public speaking skills at this two-hour meeting in the company of budding orators discussing various table topics. Accomplished public speakers, who want to polish their leadership and communication skills, are also welcome. (NG)

Live from Kristian’s living room Sun 21:00, ends May 31; donation -based, MobilePay 3028 1519 Kristian Bugge, the three-time ‘Danish folk artist of the year’, offers a live concert every Sunday. Enjoy wild polkas, jigs and lyrical waltzes. (VG)

DJ set home session May 5, 18:00-19:00; free adm Tune in to the positive vibes of the internationally-renowned DJ Phiona on the Facebook page Salento.Techno.Nights. Phiona’s motto is that he wants to make people happy with the power of music. (VG)

Experience Anna Ancher ongoing; free adm; smk.dk Immerse yourself in the life and artwork of one of the most significant painters in Danish art history, while Denmark’s national gallery SMK remains closed. Enjoy videos and texts about Ancher’s artistic universe. (VG)

Digital Visual Thinking with iPad and Procreate May 7, 19:00; 312kr, Tickets@ eventbrite.com Designed for aspiring visual thinkers who love to create digitally using different apps. You may wisely skip the wide research of self-learning, as the course promises to be a boot camp that gives you direct knowledge of how to use iPad and iOS apps to create your dream design. Create art similar to what you would have done using paper and pencil. (NG)

Architecture talks ongoing, ends May 31, various times; free adm, cafx.dk The postponed Copenhagen Architecture Festival has launched a digital exhibition platform with a different talk program planned every week. Join ‘Watch more TV!’ and follow discussions from prominent international voices in architecture in English. The program will run as flow TV - not streaming! Stay tuned at cafx.dk or via the official Facebook page for the program. (VG)


Danish will look fantastic on your lips

Kiss bad language learning goodbye We have been teaching foreigners the beautiful language of Danish for more than 40 years. So, if you are looking for high-quality learning, outstanding teachers and fast progression, Studieskolen is the place to go. Right in the center of Copenhagen. Choose from a variety of classes at Studieskolen.dk Check out how we look on SoMe