Updates of Trade Union Union News from Finland from 1997 to 28 May 2013 are published on Juhani Artto’s web site.

Helsinki (15.06.2018 - Heikki Jokinen) Two Finnish trade unions are to amalgamate. Trade Union Pro and the Federation of Salaried Employees Pardia signed a letter of intent in mid June concerning the amalgamation.

Trade Union Pro with its 110,000 members is the largest private sector union for clerical employees, experts, supervisory and managerial staff. It has a strong presence in industry, finance, ICT, communications and the service industries.

The Federation of Salaried Employees Pardia has 30,000 members working both in the state and private sectors. Most work in governmental offices and institutions, and some work in public utility companies and enterprises, universities and the Social Insurance Institution of Finland.

Both unions are members of the Finnish Confederation of Professionals STTK.

Helsinki (07.06.2018 - Heikki Jokinen) The Finnish Government has in practise ended any tripartite consensus when drafting legislation, according to the Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions SAK.

Tripartite negotiations and agreements have long been a well-established way to resolve major social issues. Governments have, until now,  been able to use the knowledge of all parties and engage them in a concerted effort to tackle issues in a practical way and reach common agreement, SAK says.

Thus, tripartite negotiations have, for decades, been the birthplace of many major social reforms. Some recent examples are the national pact for employment and growth in 2015 with ultra moderate pay rises and reform of the pension system in 2014. With genuine tripartite participation it was possible to make changes without political and social turbulence.

JHL (25.05.2018 - Heikki Jokinen) JHL, the Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors is also working for a decent working life globally. It promotes several projects in other parts of the world with the aim of improving employee rights to organise and negotiate collectively on the terms of employment.

An important partner in this work is the Trade Union Solidarity Centre of Finland SASK. The latter is the solidarity and development cooperation organisation of several Finnish trade unions which promotes decent work and core labour standards around the world.

The ongoing projects of JHL and SASK can be seen first hand at the World Village Festival in Helsinki May 26-27.

Helsinki (22.05.2018 - Heikki Jokinen) The plans of the Federation of Finnish Enterprises to get their employees to leave the union unemployment funds has been widely criticised. The trade unions are flabbergasted, too.

Mikael Pentikäinen, the CEO of the Federation of Finnish Enterprises announced in May that the federation is encouraging their member companies to pay unemployment fund fees for those employees who belong to the private YTK fund instead of the union funds.

Pentikäinen wrote with surprising honesty that the very aim of the action is to "create more pressure to reform the labour markets". According to him the entrepreneurs are running out of patience with how "the trade union movement puts a brake on necessary labour market reform and prevents enterprises and their employees from making local agreements concerning terms of employment".

Unemployment funds are traditionally set up and administered by the trade unions and work in co-operation with the unions. YTK fund is an exception to this rule, a private fund without connection to the trade unions.