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Stories about life in Denmark

Denmark’s Weapons Against COVID-19: Early Action, High Trust—and a No-Nonsense Queen

The worst-case coronavirus scenario is as terrifying in Denmark as it is everywhere else. There is no guarantee that the Danish health system will have the resources to help everyone who needs care. And the economy might be in tatters when the quarantine ends.

But for now, there is a certain pleasure in watching the gentle social machinery of the Danish state swing into action.

At the lakes in downtown Copenhagen—the city’s former moat—kindly city employees in safety vests make sure everyone runs or strolls in a clockwise direction, minimizing the chance of close face-to-face encounters.

The Danish police sent a friendly message to every mobile telephone in the country, reminding recipients to practice social distancing as you “enjoy your weekend.”

And Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen made an appearance on the Instagram account of Denmark’s top Gen-Z influencer, Anders Hemmingsen. She empathized with teens’ desire to go out and party, but encouraged them to stay home and tolerate their parents for a little longer.

I occasionally write for other media outlets and websites. The above is an excerpt for a piece about how Denmark handles coronavirus that I wrote for Quillette, an international magazine devoted to free thought.

Read the entire piece in Quillette here.


Hear all our How to Live in Denmark podcasts on Spotify and on Apple Podcasts (iTunes).

Stories about life in Denmark

Coronavirus and Denmark: A few thoughts

The first Danish Coronavirus case was diagnosed on February 27, and so many things have changed in Denmark over the past four weeks.

Most notable, of course, is the misery of the people infected with the virus, the pain of the families who have lost loved ones, and the Herculean efforts of the health care workers who care for them.

But daily life has changed for ordinary citizens as well, and not just because many of us aren’t quite sure what will be happening with our jobs and exactly how we will be paying the rent in the future, not to mention all that online shopping from home we’ve been doing during quarantine.

Schools are closed, with the kids (more or less) learning from home, and many of their parents are (more or less) working from home too. Cinemas, shops, gyms, and swimming halls have been shut down in an attempt to break the chain of infections. Concerts and sporting events are canceled.

Confirmations scheduled for the spring have been put off – a crushing disappointment for the teenagers who have spent the past 6 months in Bible studies with hopes of a big spring party.

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