Key areas of participation and inclusionAuttava käsi

Preventing poverty and social exclusion

Social exclusion and poverty cause human suffering, health disparities and inequality. Some people are in danger of permanent social exclusion.

The MSAH strategy for social and health policy and the government programme stress that social exclusion and poverty are being tackled by:

  • strengthening people's participation and working capacity
  • reducing unemployment, poverty, people's lack of prospects and deprivation
  • ensuring social security and basic services

Poverty and social exclusion require action and cooperation across several administrative sectors.

The EU strategy is to cut relative poverty and social exclusion by 2020. Finland's national programme aims to improve the situation of people who are on low incomes, the socially excluded and unemployed.

Safeguarding housing

The MSAH supports benefits and services for independent living, tackling homelessness and coping with housing costs.

The Ministry of the Environment is primarily responsible for government housing policy and reducing homelessness

The MSAH social and health policy strategy and the government programme stress

  • the aim of government housing policy as being to eradicate long-term homelessness
  • the possibility for homeless people and other special groups to acquire their own home by improving cooperation across administrative sectors
  • preventing youth homelessness and social exclusion.

Disability policy

The MSAH coordinates disability policy, the implementation of which is the responsibility of all administrative sectors. The principles of disability policy are

  • equality,
  • non-discrimination
  • sufficient services and support

Finland's Disability Policy Programme sets out specific measures for the period 2010-2015. The main aim of the programme is that society as a whole is committed to promoting the rights and equality of people with disabilities.

The aims of the programme are

  • the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the required legislative changes entailed
  • improving socio-economic situation and eradication of poverty of people with disabilities
  • ensuring the nationwide availability and quality of special services and support
  • increasing and strengthening broad-based accessibility in society
  • enhancing research on disability, increasing the knowledge base and developing versatile methods supporting the implementation and monitoring of disability policy
  • UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities