Participation entails involvement, influence as well as care and sharing in society's commonly constructed welfare.
Finnish social and health policy helps bolster the participation and quality of life of children and adults of all ages, men and women, as well as language, cultural and other minorities or special groups in the population. These issues play a central role in solutions concerning work, housing, education, physical exercise and the environment.
The MSAH is responsible for ensuring that people have an adequate income and access to functional basic services.
The MSAH's duties in strengthening participation involve:
- preventing poverty and social exclusion
- housing support through services and housing benefit
- disability policy issues
- Roma policy issues
- the welfare and health of immigrants and other special population groups
- strengthening social welfare
- last-resort income security
Strategic emphases and aims
The MSAH strategy for social and health policy and the government programme stress:
- reducing poverty, inequality and social exclusion
- increasing family welfare and everyone's participation in society
- social and health services for all and in addition measures to target people in vulnerable situations
- employment as the best safeguard against poverty and social exclusion
- people of working age and people with varied working capacity to be able to take part in working life according to their own capability
- develop the labour market, taxation and social protection from the perspective of participation.
- income support, municipal services and employment services to form a single entity
- increasing pluralism and innovation through multiculturalism
Preventing social exclusion is one of the government programme's three focal points. The aim of the cross-sectoral action programme includes strengthening the equality of different population groups, to prevent exclusion from employment and the labour market and to improve the situation of people on low incomes.
Promoting participation is also one of the themes of the National Development Programme for Social Welfare and Health Care (Kaste).