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One month until municipal elections: One single councillor can determine the fate of services

In the municipal elections this June, you can make an impact on how the schools, libraries and sports sites of your municipality will function in the future. Advance voting starts on 26 May, election day is 13 June. Remember to vote! Only the votes cast will be counted.

Municipality decision makers decide about the maintenance of your street, how much money the local library or theatre will get, and how children’s education and day care are organised.

You on the other hand get to decide who gets all this power. Municipal elections are held to elect the councillors of the municipalities. Municipal councils have the highest decision making power in municipalities.

Trade union JHL’s Municipality Renovation provides 15 tools for getting Finland’s municipalities into shape. In the municipal elections, vote for a candidate committed to JHL’s Municipality Renovation.

You can already vote in May

The election day for the municipal elections is Sunday 13 June 2021. Advance voting in Finland takes place from 26 May to 8 June 2021. Advance voting abroad takes place from 2 to 5 June 2021.

For more information on the municipal elections, go to vaalit.fi/en/municipal elections.

Where do I find information on the candidates?

Many medias will once again open candidate selection engines which enable you to look for a suitable candidate. News Media Finland’s search tool is one way of finding medias in your region: https://www.uutismediat.fi/sanomalehtihaku/ (in Finnish).

Yle’s candidate selection engine opens on 11 May.

SAK’s candidate selection engine (https://kuntavaalikone.fi/) will help you find a candidate committed to values that are important to salary and wage earners.

On 14 May, the Ministry of Justice will publish the names of candidates for municipal elections (https://tulospalvelu.vaalit.fi/KV-2021/en/ehd_listat_kokomaa.htm).

One single councillor can save the services

Municipal councils also decide on who will produce city services. There have been outsourcing plans in various cities in Finland. In Rauma, the municipal council rejected a gigantic outsourcing which was threatening the city’s food and cleaning services.
In Lahti, councillors saved the city’s food services from outsourcing and prevented competitive tendering. Things did not go quite as well in Oulu, where the council decided on a large-scale outsourcing. The council president had the casting vote. One councillor could have turned the situation around.

Services attract new municipality residents

Municipal services are important to people in Finland. In April 2021, JHL released a public services barometer. According to the barometer, an overwhelming majority of the people in Finland (82%) wants to live in a municipality with good public services.

– With remote work becoming more common, many people are thinking about where to live. Well-functioning services attract new residents to municipalities. This summer’s municipal elections will show how well future decision makers understand this, JHL President Päivi Niemi-Laine emphasises.