Survey Reveals High Levels of Discrimination Against Immigrants in Finland

Survey Reveals High Levels of Discrimination Against Immigrants in Finland

A recent survey conducted by the Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) has shed light on the prevalence of discrimination faced by immigrants in Finland.

The survey asked more than 7,800 adults who were born outside of Finland or whose parents were born abroad about their experiences. Over 40% of those surveyed said they felt discriminated against in the last year.

Discrimination based on background and ethnicity

The survey found that 75% of people who felt discriminated against said it was because of their background, ethnicity, or hair color.

Immigrants from African and Middle Eastern countries reported the highest levels of discrimination.

Something noteworthy is that immigrant women reported facing less discrimination based on their gender compared to women in Finland overall.

Only 4% of immigrant women said they experienced gender discrimination, while previous studies have shown that 8% of women in Finland as a whole faced this type of bias.

Finland’s changing demographics

Preliminary data from Statistics Finland shows that by the end of December 2023, Finland’s population surpassed 5.6 million people.

Throughout the year, the country saw a population increase of 40,588, mainly because more people moved in from other countries than left.

The number of people immigrating to Finland was higher than those leaving at 58,496. 

As Finland’s population becomes more diverse, it is crucial to address discrimination and promote inclusivity. This will help ensure that society remains harmonious and continues to thrive.

Call for education and anti-racism initiatives

THL research professor Anu Castaneda stressed the importance of education and anti-racism programs in different parts of Finnish society.

She pointed out that discrimination can cause people to feel less happy, less safe, and less included.

Challenges and opportunities for newcomers in Finland

The survey's findings may raise concerns among potential visitors and immigrants to Finland.

It is crucial that Finland addresses discrimination to ensure a welcoming environment for all travelers and long-term residents, such as families, investors, digital nomads, and students.

Addressing discrimination through policy

The high levels of discrimination reported in the survey show the need for Finland to review and strengthen its immigration policies.

As Finland gets ready to implement the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) and continues to bring in talent from different countries, it needs to focus on making a society where everyone feels included, no matter where they come from.

If Finland stands up against discrimination and implements effective plans to fight racism, it can make the country a more welcoming place for all immigrants, regardless of their background or reason for relocating.

Building a more inclusive Finland

As Finland’s population grows more diverse, it is crucial for the country to actively fight against discrimination and make sure all residents feel like they belong. This means setting up thorough plans to tackle racism and educating people on inclusivity.

By doing this, Finland can move toward a society where everyone is respected and valued, no matter where they come from.