Czech morning news in brief: top stories for Feb. 22, 2021

Czechs working more during the pandemic, Hamáček to defend ČSSD role, Winery of the Year announced, and February temperature records could be matched

Expats.cz

Written by Expats.cz
Published on 22.02.2021 09:21 (updated on 22.02.2021)

POLITICS: Hamáček will defend the position of chairman of the ČSSD party

Czech Deputy PM and Interior Minister Jan Hamáček will seek re-election as ČSSD leader at the party congress, he said in an interview for today's issue of daily Mlada fronta Dnes. A week ago, ČSSD deputy chairman and Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček announced his candidature for chairman, too. It is always good to know whether there is support for the candidate, Hamáček said. "Taking into account that I feel the support of Central Bohemia, which is my home region, I will contest," he added. In reaction to Petříček's announcement, the incumbent ČSSD chairman Hamáček said last week that he would inform on his decision to contest the post on time.

ECONOMY: Czechs working more during the Pandemic, according to new survey

Czechs now work an average of eight hours and 22 minutes a day, more than before the coronavirus pandemic. They work more often from home, with home offices used by a third of the economically active population. Almost half of the employees perceive that they spend more time at work than when actually at work. This follows from a survey of myTimy among employees and HR professionals. 42 percent of people work more regularly than they should, especially people in their thirties. 

A quarter of employees work more than nine hours every day. HR professionals confirm the trend of more workload, according to 44 percent of them, employees work more at home offices. In addition, half of the employees at home are unable to separate work and personal activities, and their work commitments intertwine throughout the day. The biggest problem with this is the generation of people in their forties (68 percent), who most often blend their working time with childcare in distance learning. 

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PROTESTS: Three hundred gather to protest anti-COVID restrictions

About three hundred people demonstrated in Prague's Wenceslas Square against government measures against the spread of coronavirus on Sunday. According to ČTK, the convener of the event was Jana Peterková, an activist and former television reporter. At the demonstration, she called for the resignation of the government. "Unlike all other countries, it is the only obstacle to the free life we ​​are fighting for," she said. Other speakers included representatives from the Chcípl PES initiative. They criticized the approval of a pandemic law or distance learning in schools, and called for activists to join. "Let's unite and pull together," they said. A joint demonstration is to take place on March 7 at Wenceslas Square.

MENTAL HEALTH: Czech mental health organization to cooperate with WHO

The Czech National Institute of Mental Health (NUDZ) has become a center that is officially cooperating with the World Health Organisation (WHO). As a WHO's designated centre, the NUDZ will assist, among others, in introducing psychiatric care reforms in other countries of Central and East Europe and also Central Asia. It will also contribute its experiences such as the process of destigmatising mental diseases, NUDZ director Petr Winkler. He said the WHO, seated in Geneva, has about 800 designed centrts worldwide, each with special areas and goals to deal with.

This year marks 60 years since the establishment of the Institute of Psychiatric Research (VUPs), whose successor the NUDZ was launched in 2015. The VUPs was the WHO's designed centre in the past. The WHO usually signs cooperation deals with organisations for four years.

AWARDS: Czech 'Winery of the Year' winner unveiled

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Posted by VinaÅ™ství roku on Monday, 8 February 2021

Sonberk Winery has been named as the Czech Winery of the Year. They not only won the main prize but also picked up another award in the category of medium winemaking with production from 50,001 to 250,000 liters per year. It is the 11th edition of the competition. In compliance with hygienic measures, the expert commission visited all nine wineries between Jan. 24 and 26 directly in their operations, where it evaluated the complex activities of the winery according to the set criteria and expert assessment. Sonberk previously won the title of the absolute winner of Winery of the Year in 2013. The winery is the first to receive the highest award in this prestigious industry competition twice.

WEATHER: February records could be matched this year with spring-like temperatures

Temperatures this week will come close to reaching records for February, according to iDnes. They could reach up to 17 degrees, sometimes even higher. Spring weather will last until the end of the working week, on the weekend a cold front will arrive. From the beginning of the week, very warm air will flow over the Czech Republic from the south and southwest, which will cause low clouds and rising temperatures. It will be sunny especially in the mountains, in the east and northeast of the territory. It follows weeks of colder weather with snow hitting parts of the country over the past fortnight.

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