- Swiss statistics
Hot, not so hot
The so-called Ice Saints refer to five days in May which, according to popular belief, are more likely to have night frosts. “Cold Sophie” on 15 May is the best-known Ice Saint – and the reason why many of us wait until after mid-May before planting garden seedlings. Nevertheless, Cold Sophie forgot Switzerland this year: the mercury hit 30 °C on 15 May, the first properly hot day in 2022.
Isn’t it wonderful that roughly half of Swiss mayors are men and half are women? A shining example of gender equality! Sorry, we’re joking. Only 16 per cent of Switzerland’s 2,000 and more municipalities have a female mayor. The SP has the biggest contingent of female mayors among the political parties, while the SVP has the smallest.
The total volume of paid work performed in Switzerland last year amounted to 7.8 billion hours – up 2.5 per cent on 2020. Have we suddenly become workaholics? No. The simple reason for the increase is that Covid restrictions were lifted.
Over a fifth, or 22.5 per cent, of Swiss teenagers smoke. And two thirds of adults who smoke started to do so when they were in their teens. The Tobacco Control Fund (TCF) is now investing 5.5 billion Swiss francs in anti-smoking campaign aimed at young people. Funding of the TCF relies on a levy charged on every packet of cigarettes sold in Switzerland. Yes, you read that correctly.
Perhaps you are less likely to dream of 12-cylinder engines during your mid-life crisis if petrol was never your thing in the first place. The smoking analogy in reverse! We compared May 2022 with May 2021 and, lo and behold, new registrations of electric cars increased by 37 per cent while those of fuel-driven cars fell by 25 per cent year-on-year.
Picture The early Christian martyr, Sophia of Rome, whose feast day is 15 May. This warm-hearted lady has long had a reputation for frosty nights. Photo: Icon from 1658, Smolensk Monastery