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JHL has asked the police to investigate whether Helsinki City Transport has broken the law: Employees were withheld crucial information on the underlying causes of corporatisation

For months, the management of Helsinki City Transport (HKL) completely misled its employees in terms of what it means in practice to turn a municipal enterprise (part of the City of Helsinki) into a company. During the cooperation negotiations, no information was given on the fact that all the metro transport operations will in practice be left outside the company.

Two of trade union JHL’s member branches want the police to investigate whether HKL has broken the Act on Co-operation with Undertakings. The branches reported the offence to Helsinki Police on Sunday 19 September.

The matter has to do with the City of Helsinki’s intentions of turning HKL from a municipal enterprise into a company. In late winter 2021, the municipal enterprise and the employees conducted cooperation negotiations concerning the corporatisation. The negotiations ended in April. Not until August did the employees learn that the corporatisation does not concern HKL’s metro transport operations at all.

– Leaving metro transport operations outside the company is bound to have an effect on the personnel. This kind of trickery does not increase employees’ trust in the project or employer, says Petri Lillqvist, chair of JHL’s branch for tram and metro personnel (Raitio- ja metrohenkilökunnan yhdistys JHL ry).

JHL’s branch for Helsinki track workers (Helsingin raidetyöntekijät JHL ry) is also involved in the report of the offence. According to the branches, the plans and other documents drafted during the cooperation negotiations are not valid. The employer has neglected to inform about a significant change which affects the employees a great deal.

JHL President Päivi-Niemi Laine understands why the HKL employees are very disappointed in the actions of their employer. The secrecy diminishes trust and decreases well-being at work. HKL works the best in its current form, Niemi-Laine reminds.

– HKL works well as a municipal enterprise, and with the current organisation it is possible to also cooperate with the neighbouring municipalities of Helsinki. I once again appeal to Helsinki City Councillors: There are great risks involved in corporatisation, think about them carefully before voting on the fate of HKL.

More information:

JHL President Päivi Niemi-Laine 040 702 4772