Morning Briefing – Wednesday, November 6

The Copenhagen Post’s daily round-up of the front pages and other major Danish news stories

Dirty homes becoming a political priority
Housekeeping help for senior citizens living in their own home is on its way to becoming a municipal service of the past, say experts. Local councils have cut the number of hours they use on helping the elderly clean up their homes by a third since 2008. Before long, predicts Roger Buch, a local government researcher, councils will just cut the service entirely. “Some will need to pay someone to do it. Others, who can’t afford it, will wind up without anything,” he said. Prior to the recession, it was normal for the elderly to have their homes cleaned weekly. Currently, the standard is every other week, while in a fourth of councils, it is once every three weeks. Ældresagen, an elderly advocacy group, worried that dirtier homes would mean sicker seniors. Local councillors defended the reductions, however, saying the time was better spent on personal care. – Politiken

SEE RELATED: UN report: Danish elderly in poor health

Unions paying for political influence
Centre-left parties in the country’s largest cities can count on not just the moral support of unions during the local elections, they can also expect financial support from them as well – if they agree to pursue certain policies. LO, the national federation of unions, pays what amounts to 2 kroner per member to Socialdemokraterne, Socialistisk Folkeparti and Enhedlisten, if the parties sign a written agreement that they will work to prevent employers from underpaying workers. LO also recommends that members vote for one of the three parties. Political opponents criticised the efforts to gain influence through offers of financial support, while scholars specialising in labour relations said direct support for political parties was the fastest way for unions to drive away members. – Jyllands-Posten

LOCAL ELECTION 13: See our full election coverage

More questions about former PM's finances
Questions about whether Lars Løkke Rasmussen (V), the opposition leader, is reporting the full amount of his additional income continue to mount. As former prime minister Rasmussen receives 1.5 million kroner annually, but must deduct any additional income from that amount. In 2011 and 2012, however, he reportedly failed to answer five requests to report his imcome. Officials indicated that it was not unusual for them to have to send out reminders to former lawmakers, but tax accountants said not answering in time was inappropriate. – Berlingske

SEE RELATED: Problems just won’t go away for ‘Luxury Lars’

Editorial Excerpt | Homework help
Schools today are more diverse than they were 20 or 30 years ago, and that creates a lot of additional challenges. Still, it’s worth pointing out that previous generations of the under-privileged have moved up the social ladder by [making their way through the educational system]. Maybe because we used to have higher academic requirements and demanded greater discipline. Helping weak students requires more than just having teachers help them with their homework. Doing so would help, but schools should focus on getting parents to take more responsibility and get more involved in what’s going on at school. Schools should also work to improve teachers’ qualifications and help change the mindset back to school being a place where you go to learn, not to hang out. – Berlingske

SEE RELATED: Students more interested in play than homework

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