General information

The Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors JHL is a trade union for people working in the public services and private welfare services sectors.

JHL offers a modern channel for the unionisation of all wage and salary earners in the public sector and the welfare services sector. It provides an alternative to narrow, occupation-based representation of interests. JHL is highly influential in developing the working environment and work in general.

JHL participates in negotiating agreements that affect the working environment of welfare services provided by the state, municipalities, the church and the private sector.


Public services constitute all services provided by central or local government (e.g. health services, schools, universities, police, road maintenance, day care, services for the elderly, government office services, library services).

Private welfare services constitute all services financed through taxes but provided by a private service provider (e.g. private social and health services, detox services provided by organisations, services provided by private vocational schools, sports club activities, services offered in the agriculture and counselling sectors).


JHL has about 165,000 members representing nearly all fields of occupation.

JHL members are employed by:

  • the state
  • municipalities
  • joint municipal authorities
  • parishes
  • companies and enterprises owned by the above
  • non-profit organisations
  • companies or corporations providing services for the public sector in the corresponding industries


  • negotiates the collective agreements for these fields
  • promotes the interests of its members at the workplace
  • works to improve the income, job security and quality of life of its members
  • seeks to increase its influence by gaining a stronger foothold among companies and non-governmental organisations, which apply principles of entrepreneurship in their operations and which are to an increasing extent providing public, tax-financed services.

JHL has 10 regional offices throughout Finland. There is a JHL branch at almost every workplace in the concerned sectors, and JHL’s shop steward is often right on hand.