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CANCER

Firemen cycle 500km for cancer recognition

Dozens of firemen have cycled nearly 500 kilometres from Bergen to Oslo and handed over a petition to parliament to have cancer recognized as a workplace injury.

Firemen cycle 500km for cancer recognition
Photo: Jon Olav Nesvold/NTB Scanpix

The 60 or so firemen arrived at the parliament building in Oslo after pedalling all the way across the country in a bid to raise awareness for their campaign.

They believe that firemen who get cancer should automatically be entitled to workplace compensation since ample evidence exists of a link between firefighting and an increased risk of contracting various forms of the disease. 

Firefighters with cancer currently have to prove a connection in each individual case between the onset of the disease and their working environment.

“We are calling for a common national occupational standard for firefighters, which must be adhered to by all fire stations,” Tommy Kristoffersen told the NRK network. Kristoffersen is the head of the Firefighters against Cancer campaign.

“We are a risk group and we have to do something about it,” he added. 

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JOBS

Norway posts record number of vacant job listings

A record number of openings have been listed on the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration’s (NAV) job portal this year.

The job market in Norway is recovering from the pandemic quicker than expected according to Holte. Pictured is two employee's going over some paperwork
The job market in Norway is recovering from the pandemic quicker than expected according to Holte. Pictured is two employee's going over some paperwork. Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

Job vacancies on NAV’s job portal, arbeidsplassen.no. are at record numbers already this year, with two months of 2021 still to go. 

So far this year, around 433,000 jobs have been listed on the portal, surpassing the figure for pre-pandemic 2019. 

“Already now, at the end of September, we have even more vacancies through this year so far than we had throughout 2019,” Hans Christian Holte, director of Nav, told public broadcaster NRK

NAV estimates that by the end of the year, well over 500,000 vacancies will have been registered in 2021. 

Some industries stand out in particular when it comes to the demand for labour. Tourism and catering, daycare, sales and health sciences are all areas with significant demand for workers, according to NAV’s director.

Holte rejected the idea that Norwegians may be too picky about the types of jobs they are willing to take as a partial explanation for the vacancies. He instead said it was about people having the necessary skills. 

READ ALSO: Five essential things to know for anyone working in Norway

In addition, he also said that the job market had recovered from the pandemic much quicker than expected. 

“We see that unemployment, in general, is back to the level it was before the pandemic. We actually expected this to happen next year,” he said. 

One trend concerning Holte is the rise in long-term unemployment in Norway. According to the NAV director, the number of people who have been unemployed for between one-and-a-half to two years has more than doubled since last year. 

“This is perhaps the biggest concern I have right now – there are the many who have been out of work for a long time. Maybe there are special reasons for it, such as gaps in the CV, language challenges, or health-related things. Norwegian society must now be good and help them back into working life,” he explained. 

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