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Swedish society particularly values diligence and modesty, while people in Slovenia tend to favour other qualities

Speakers at today’s afternoon press conference on the current situation regarding COVID-19 were Mojca Matičič from the Clinic for Infectious Diseases at the University Medical Centre Ljubljana, who is also a professional mentor to students at the government call centre, and Robert Masten from the Department of Psychology of the Faculty of Arts of the University of Ljubljana.

Robert Masten

Robert Masten | Author Danijel Novakovič/STA

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According to today’s data from the National Institute of Public Health, Slovenia has 20,720 active COVID-19 cases. The 14-day incidence per 100,000 people is 989 and the 7-day daily average of confirmed cases is 1,539.The regions with the highest incidence are Posavska with 1,445, Pomurska with 1,366 and Koroška with 1,338 positive cases in 14-days.

The regions with the lowest incidence are Obalno-kraška with 734, Osrednjeslovenska with 717 and Goriška with 685 cases.

Ms Matičič spoke about the importance of the call centre. In the seven weeks of the epidemic in the second wave, the call centre received 34,500 calls, which is almost 5,000 calls per week or 1,000 calls per day. The last week of October was a record one, with some 1,200 calls each day. Friday, 13 November, saw a daily record of almost 1,500 calls.

Mr Masten talked about the situation of young people in Slovenian society and in Sweden and about their path to independence. This path begins in childhood. If childhood is problem-free, this can in fact prove detrimental to the child’s development, he argued. Children "wrapped up in cotton wool" who have too much freedom are likely to grow into adults who expect the world to adapt to them and perceive every restriction as an injustice. For such people it goes without saying that they should get everything that they see as theirs, that the world exists to fulfil their wishes.On the other hand, children who are too restricted and who do not receive enough support also have difficulties in developing into healthy and happy adults. They often have difficulty trusting themselves and others and can lack the confidence that they can take control of situations themselves. The youth’s path to adulthood is often difficult, but can also be very rewarding and liberating. In the EU, the young people who leave their parental home the earliest are the Swedes. The average age of Swedish girls leaving home is 17.6 and boys 18. In Sweden, policy targeted at young people aged 13 to 25 promotes young people taking on an active role in society. It is interesting to compare that picture with that in Slovenia and some other southern European countries, where 80% of young people up to the age of 30 live with their parents against only 10% in Scandinavia.

In Sweden, for example, if someone still lives with their parents in their 20s, people might well ask what’s wrong with them! For Slovenians of various convictions, Sweden is an example to follow in many ways. Sweden has a high standard of living, a highly developed economy and a high level of public services and, thanks to the strong sense of individual responsibility, a high level of social compromise is possible. The society values diligence, modesty, personal responsibility and only with that freedom. In Slovenia, on the other hand, other values are at the forefront, for example sociability and enjoyment.