Legislation on Occupational Safety and Health

Finland has extensive legislation on promoting the safety and health of employees.

Regulations, compliance with them and their supervision are the key ways for OSH (the MSAH and the areas of OSH responsibility of the Regional State Administrative Agencies) to influence conditions in the workplace.

The core of health, safety and working conditions

Occupational health and safety legislation is crucial to promoting employees' physical and mental health, as well as conditions of employment. OSH authorities monitor compliance with the Contractor's Liability Act and the Equality Act and data protection in the working life.

Also, regulated requirements concerning the use in the workplace of machinery, equipment, chemicals and other products contribute to occupational safety.

Legislation prepared in Finland and by the EU

Most recent OSH legislation is based in EU legislation (in the form of directives and decrees). Finnish specialists take an active part in preparing EU OSH legislation.

EU directives and decrees concerning OSH deal with

  • employee safety, health and safe working environments
  • employee rights, working hours and other conditions of employment
  • technical safety requirements for manufacturers concerning the use of machinery and personal protective equipment.

EU directives are incorporated in part into Finnish legislation.

OSH at EU level is dealt with by the council on employment, social affairs and inclusion. In Finland the MSAH's department for OSH deals with legislation in this field.

The MSAH also has an advisory board for the preparation of OSH provisions.
The Ministry of Employment and Economy is responsible for general legislation on employee rights.

Further information

Antti Janas, Deputy Director General 
Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, Department for Work and Gender Equality / TTO, Legislation Unit / SY Telephone:0295163501   Email Address: