Sweden Meets The Footloose With Dancing Ban

For anyone who likes to add a little bit of dancing to their itinerary when traveling, you might want to be up to speed on a new law that frowns on the footloose taking effect in Sweden.Yes, you’re not seeing things – officials in Sweden have voted to uphold a previous ordinance that puts a halt to ‘spontaneous dancing’ within Sweden.

To be specific, the dancing ban comes into play for local bars, restaurants and clubs that don’t possess the proper permits for dancing in those establishments. Any establishment found in violation of the law will be served with a hefty but undisclosed fine. The fine will also include their license to serve alcohol being revoked as well. The law has been a source of controversy since it was first brought up in 2012, and it’s origin dates back to antiquated codes going back to the 1970’s.

The police authorities in Sweden have gone on record as supporting the bill being upheld, claiming that spontaneous dancing leads to disorder and that disorder leads to fighting and other criminal behavior.

When the law was first proposed, there was a significant amount of outrage expressed on behalf of club owners. While Sweden has been highly regarded for its contributions to dance music across the globe, it wasn’t really considered a destination in the vein of Ibiza and Berlin for those tourists who indulge in dance parties. But the past few years has seen the beginnings of their own dance club movement, and their position is that this law would stifle that growth as well as put a dent into the amount of tourists heading to the country. There is also concern that such a law hampers the basic fundamental freedoms of assembly for citizens. The vote to uphold also came with drama amongst the political parties, with one of them claiming that the move to vote came in earlier than expected. As a result, there are now plans for protests with dancing at the core. Anders Varveus, a noted figure of Stockholm’s dance scene and a main architect of a public dancing demonstration that took place back in 2012, has announced plans to conduct another public demonstration that will coincide with the 20th anniversary of his Docklands nightclub being opened which will take place in August.