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Today in Austria: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

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Today in Austria: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
An elderly couple enjoying vineyard views (Photo by Christian Bowen on Unsplash)

Health and education top the wish list for Austrian politicians, Austria secures ticket to 2025 Handball World Championship, nearly half a million Austrians receive care allowance and more news from Austria on Monday.


Health and education top the wish list for Austrian politicians

A new poll reveals that healthcare is the top concern for Austrians, with 82 percent of eligible voters agreeing it's a legitimate political issue. However, the willingness to take action is much lower, with only 35 percent of those prioritising healthcare saying they would actively campaign for improvements.

The study by the Linz Market Institute found strong support across party lines for improving the education system (78 percent), combating corruption (76 percent), and fighting rising inflation (75 percent). Issues like maintaining neutrality (72 percent) and reducing energy costs (70 percent) also garnered significant backing.

While many Austrians want positive change, the poll highlights a gap between concern and activism. Market researcher David Pfarrhofer explains, "People might believe in better-paying jobs but expect others to make it happen." He contrasted this with niche topics like EU membership (22 percent support, but high active campaign rates) and vaccine policy (a third oppose measures and are highly motivated to act). Notably, support for these latter issues skews heavily towards the far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ).

How can Vienna solve its ‘immigration problems’?

The Austrian capital faces challenges with a high influx of immigrants, primarily people coming through family reunification for refugees' families. What does each major political party believe should be done to tackle the issues?

Austria secures ticket to 2025 Handball World Championship

Austria's handball team secured their spot at the 2025 World Championship on Sunday. Following a narrow win in Georgia, they defeated them decisively 37:31 (21:17) at home in Vienna.

This victory marks the 11th major tournament qualification for the Austrian Handball Federation (ÖHB) team since 2010. Head Coach Ales Pajovic expressed his delight: "I'm very happy that we're at the World Cup, we missed the last one. The boys worked well and they did a good job of implementing what we had planned." He also praised the opportunity to give more players experience.

Austria will await the final round draw on May 29th, which will determine their path to the championship held in Croatia, Denmark, and Norway in January and February.


Austria attracts Indonesian skilled workers

Austria is looking to Indonesia to help address labour shortages. On Sunday, officials signed an agreement to expand cooperation in skilled worker migration, building on a 2022 deal focused on training.

Indonesia's young, educated population is a prime target. A successful reform of Austria's skilled worker visa program has seen a jump in approvals, with the government expecting to issue 10,000 work permits by year's end.

"Demographics force us to attract skilled workers," said an official. The tourism industry, a significant beneficiary, is "delighted" to recruit new employees.


Nearly half a million Austrians receive care allowance, primarily women

Data released for Day of Care shows that nearly 478,000 people in Austria rely on care allowances, with women making up the vast majority (295,000).

The Ministry of Social Affairs reports most recipients fall under the lowest care level (28.3 percent), highlighting the need for increased support.  Care allowance amounts vary depending on the level of care needed, ranging from €192 for level one to €2,062 for the highest level seven.

The Ministry of Health acknowledges a growing need for care as life expectancy rises.  This trend, coupled with staff retirements in the care sector, presents a challenge for the future.


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