Wednesday's papers: Unsolved thefts, free medicine and Merkel visit

The day's papers report on unsolved thefts, free head lice medicine for families and Angela Merkel's visit to Helsinki.

Daily Helsingin Sanomat reports that most larcenies go unsolved in Finland. According to statistics by the Police University College, police were able to clear 3,150 offences between January and September of this year, while about 41,500 remain unsolved.

In 80 smaller municipalities, especially in Lapland and Åland, the police did not solve a single crime over the nine-month period, HS said.

Among the largest cities, the percentage of closed cases was the lowest in Vantaa, Helsinki and Tampere - between four and five percent - while about nine percent of crimes were solved in Pori, Oulu and Espoo. Nationally, the success rate hovers at about seven percent.

According to the National Police Board, police focuse on more serious crime.

"Frankly, we do not have adequate resources to spend time looking into petty larceny. Our efforts are concentrated on preventing and investigating serious crime," said Heikki Lausmaa from the Board.

Despite the low success rate, Lausmaa recommends that people report all crimes to the police.

"Only if crimes are reported, do we get an idea of the kind of criminal activity taking place. Sometimes one report can lead us to more large-scale crime," he added.

Free medicine for families

Daily Turun Sanomat writes about a proposal by Children's Ombudsman Tuomas Kurttila to provide families with free medication to treat head lice and pinworms.

According to Kurttila, if such medicines were free of charge, parents would take fewer sick days, and children's well-being would improve. In addition, families would feel less stressed and financially strained.

"Experts tell us that head lice and pin worm problems in schools and daycare centres can turn into epidemics, because some of the families can't afford to buy treatments," Kurttila said in a statement.

As a result, he proposes that schools, daycare institutions and children's health centres provide such medicines to families free of charge at their request.

The Ombudsman has sent the proposal to the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, TS said.

Merkel and Juncker visit

Meanwhile, tabloid Ilta-Sanomat reports that traffic in Helsinki will be affected a meeting of the European Parliament's European People's Party attended by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and other top EU politicians on Wednesday and Thursday.

The two-day conference will take place at Messukeskus, the Helsinki Expo and Convention Centre. As a result, routes between the venue and the airport, as well as some streets in the center, may be closed for short periods of time, IS says.

During the meeting, EPP will elect its lead candidate for the EU elections in May next year.

Hungary's prime minister Viktor Orbán and his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar are also expected to attend the conference, IS says.
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