Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) says his government is preparing for the upcoming framework session by drafting measures targeted at the over 600,000 people who have no upper-secondary education qualifications.
The employment rate for that group of people is as low as 43 per cent.
Sipilä shed light on the preparatory work while commenting on the final report tabled last week by a government-appointed inequality task force headed by Juho Saari, a professor of social and health policy at the University of Tampere.
“The task force states in its report, for example, that the public administration must step up its efforts to support the endeavours of people to promote their health and well being and consequently reduce the long-term use of income transfers and services. The activation model for unemployment security and the inclusive social security trial are already taking us in this direction and supporting the endeavours of people,” he writes.
“The discussion on inequalities tends to focus only on the level of benefits. Too often it is forgotten that services are particularly important when life gets hard,” he adds.
Sipilä estimates that finding a balance between employment and the basic social security floor will be one of the key challenges of the next government.
He also reminds that his government has already launched some of the reforms proposed by the inequality task force. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the Ministry of Education and Culture, he highlights, have launched joint efforts to overhaul child and family services and to increase the career opportunities of people with limited work ability.
The Ministry of the Environment, meanwhile, has made “great progress” in its mission to halve homelessness, assesses Sipilä.
“The government has taken and continues to take income disparity and inequalities seriously. We will soon have two new tools for this effort: the proposals of the inequality task force of Juho Saari and an assessment of the impact of the government’s economic policy on employment and income disparity that is to be published later next week,” he says.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Aleksi Tuomola – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi