Kai Mykkänen (NCP), the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, has expressed his bewilderment with the repudiation of the so-called activation model for unemployment security.
Mykkänen reminded in an interview with Aamulehti on Friday that the passiveness of unemployed job seekers is a widely recognised problem, viewing that it is consequently not unreasonable to oblige job seekers to work for 18 hours or participate in employment services for five days over a roughly three-month period.
He also estimated that it should not be impossible to organise the necessary employment in every county.
“If you live in a region where you can’t find a job for 18 hours, an opportunity to make little less than 250 euros in self-employment or any activation services, we must seriously ask how long do you have the right to demand regular unemployment benefits if you aren’t willing to move to a locality where you can find work,” he told the newspaper.
“The objective of unemployment benefits is not to prolong periods of unemployment but to offer support during a temporary period until you find a new job or are accepted into re-training. If that isn’t possible, you either have to bring the services there or support re-locating for job.”
The sponsors of a citizens’ initiative launched against the activation model have argued that job seekers should not be blamed if a job they applied for is given to another applicant or if employment services are not available in their home region.
Mykkänen admitted that job seekers alone are not to blame for the problem.
“If you aren’t accepted into the services you applied for, that’s a joint failure. Also TE Offices must look in the mirror if they can't manage to organise activation measures for even a week,” he said before encouraging the sponsors of the initiative to offer their thoughts on how the employment situation could be improved in Finland.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Markku Ulander – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi