Several Finnish media outlets emphasized how the security concerns caused by the growing number of Covid-19 cases in Finland will affect the forthcoming county council elections.
When the last day of elections is January 23, advance voting will begin on Wednesday. By Evening News, a total of 900 public advance polling stations are open across the country for those wishing to vote before the official date.
Polling stations will be located in public spaces such as town halls, libraries and shopping malls until 18 January.
Finns living abroad can also take part in advance voting between Wednesday and Saturday.
Morning paper reports that due to the increase in Covid-19 infections, special advance voting arrangements will be arranged in Finland for those who have been infected or exposed to the virus, including patients recovering in hospital wards.
Electoral officers who have been instructed in the use of protective equipment and security measures will visit quarantine at home or in the hospital, if necessary, to vote. Elderly people living in care facilities also have the right to vote from home.
Voters are advised to avoid polling booths if they have respiratory symptoms that could indicate an infection. They must also comply with security measures, such as using a mask and maintaining social distance when voting.
Those entitled to vote can inquire about special arrangements by contacting the central election committee of their municipality.
Literacy is a concern
Helsingin Sanomat is worrying a new phenomenon which has reportedly worried teachers in Finland. According to an online survey conducted by Päivälehti, teachers report a significant decline in students’ basic reading skills and deficiencies in reading comprehension.
They say students ’vocabulary is becoming increasingly limited and many children are unable to understand common and frequently used words and phrases.
This leads to a deterioration in reading comprehension, making it much longer to read one page than before.
Teachers have also shown that students are unable to focus on assignments and often complain that the texts they read are too long. In addition, many are unable to distinguish between different types of text; For example, some are unable to distinguish a news article from an ad.
Experts attribute the decline in literacy to children’s general lack of interest in reading and agree that while there are already literacy programs in the country that encourage reading, there is room for improvement.
Dangerous driving conditions
The Karelian is one of many local newspapers that warn of danger driving conditions on wednesday.
The Finnish Meteorological Institute has issued a warning of traffic weather around the country due to temperatures revolving around zero, especially in western and southern Finland.
Freezing rain or snow is expected to make roads slippery, increasing the risk of traffic accidents. Significant snowfall is expected in the regions of Lapland and North and South Karelia.
In addition, the Gulf of Finland has been warned of icy conditions and strong winds are expected in the coastal areas.
Source: The Nordic Page