Loimu in SuomiAreena: The Government is sending a wrong message to international professionals

The Union of Professionals in Natural, Environmental and Forestry Sciences LOIMU organised an event on international professionals together with the Chemical Industry Federation of Finland in SuomiAreena on Tuesday morning. Representatives Janne Jukkola (National Coalition Party) and Inka Hopsu (Green Party), the president of the National Union of University Students Lotta Leinonen, and Yara’s HR Manager Satu Viitala were speaking at the event.

The Finnish government has many procedures in their Programme to make the recruitment of international professionals easier, but at the same time the Programme is also creating new obstacles. Making changes to charge full tuition fees to foreign students has been widely opposed, also by Loimu together with other Akava member unions. Based on the Government Programme, it is going to happen regardless of the opposition. Also the proposed obligation to leave the country after being unemployed for 3 months is already worrying the start up community, students and, in fact, everyone living and working in Finland without citizenship.

“Overall the Government’s tight policy on immigration sends a message that foreigners are not welcome in Finland. This is a totally wrong message, especially when the population is getting older and labour shortage is increasing. The number of international professionals has grown steadily among Loimu’s members and in the fields of natural, environmental and forestry sciences. Now the future looks very worrying. Finland should open up to the world and not close its doors!” says Aaro Riitakorpi, Loimu’s Public Affairs Manager.

“Gladly we can make a lot of decisions locally regardless of the Government policy, and we should take this option with determination. All around Finland, ways to attract international professionals are being sought, and the selection of services is considered holistically from the point of view of immigrants and their families. In companies and public administration, it is possible to use anonymous recruitment to avoid discrimination based on ethnic background or language. Together with companies, universities are developing different opportunities for internships to provide relevant work experience that is useful for employment and careers for international students already while they are studying,” continues Riitakorpi.

More information: Aaro Riitakorpi, aaro.riitakorpi@loimu.fi, tel. +358 9 6226 8516.

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