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initiatives to be considered at the second proper session of the finnish expatriate parliament, 67 november 2000 initiatives to be
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Initiatives to be Considered at the Second Proper Session of the
Finnish Expatriate Parliament, 67 November 2000
INITIATIVES TO BE CONSIDERED AT THE SECOND PROPER SESSION OF THE
FINNISH EXPATRIATE PARLIAMENT,
67 NOVEMBER 2000
SUMMARY
Committee
Motion
Community
Senior Issues
Social and Health Services for Ageing Expatriate Finns
1.
Working together, and with the help of local Finnish expatriate
organisations, the authorities in Finland and the adopted home country
should establish a comprehensive care system to meet the special needs
for care in a Finnish cultural environment.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
2.
Research and Policy Measures on the Situation of Senior Expatriate
Finns
(a) The Expatriate Parliament should investigate ways of financing
research on the situation of senior expatriate Finns situation as well
as ways of developing services for this demographic group.
Central Europe*
(b) The Finnish Ministry for Social and Health Affairs should assuming
a leading role in research concerning the situation of senior
expatriate Finns. The Finnish government should finance the research
as well as the implementation of necessary policy measures suggested
by the research.
SuomiKoti Toronto, Canada
3.
The Finnish government must set a budget of operating funds for
established Finnish rest homes and nursing homes for the provision of
services in the Finnish language.
Sudbury Finnish Rest Home Society, Canada
4.
Rest homes should be established in Finland for elderly expatriate
Finns eager to spend their last years in Finland.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Pensions and Taxation
5.
Taxation of Finnish Pensions
(a) Taxation of Finnish pensions of expatriate Finns should be
harmonised within the EU and be kept in line with taxation levels
applied to pensioners living in Finland..
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(b) Source taxes on employment pensions paid from Finland to Sweden
must be reduced. Finland should return to its former policy of
exempting from taxation employment pensions paid to Sweden not
exceeding 1,500 FIM per month.
Ruotsinsuomalaiset eläkeläiset, Sweden
6.
Finland and Sweden should harmonise their policies on disability
pensions.
Ruotsinsuomalaiset eläkeläiset, Sweden
7.
Documentation of pensions.
(a) English translations should accompany all official documents
regarding expatriate Finns’ pensions.
Central Europe*
(b) Finns, who have worked in various countries, need assistance in
compiling the documents necessary to qualify for pensions benefits .
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Social Issues
Social Security in Finland for Expatriate Finns
8.
Finland’s Ministry for Social and Health Affairs should examine the
situation regarding the social security and pensions benefits of Finns
working abroad for extended periods as well as secure the continuation
of these benefits.
SuomiKoti Toronto, Canada
9.
A post of permanent Expatriate Ombudsman should be established in
Finland to assist expatriate Finns on legal and welfare issues.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Social Services Projects Abroad
10.
Support for Employment and Internship Possibilities in Social and
Health Services

(a) Possibilities for Finnish vocational students to complete
internships at expatriate associations must be improved..
Costa Blancan SuomiSeura, Spain
(b) The Finnish Ministry for Social and Health Affairs should ensure
that interested qualified staff in Finland are made aware of
employment possibilities in North America.
Sudbury Finnish Rest Home Society, Canada
11.
Development of the Support Network

(a) A system of efficient advisory services for immigrants should be
established in cooperation with local expatriate Finnish
organisations with the Finnish government funding the training of
local Finnish support people.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(b) Finnish families adjusting to conditions in their new country of
domicile demand professional assistance. The Expatriate Parliament is
requested to investigate possibilities for delivering such assistance
in the form of local projects.
SKTK, Germany
(c) The Expatriate Parliament is requested to extend operation of the
support network to Australia.
Australasian suomalaisten liitto, Australia/Asia
12.
Working with the EU and local authorities, the Finnish government
should establish hostels in other countries to aid people in need of
emergency or temporary accommodation.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
13.
The Expatriate Parliament should discuss with the Finnish government
and interest groups in the transport sector about improving the living
conditions of Finnish truck drivers and their families in Lübeck,
Germany.
SKTK, Germany
14.
Ways of preventing mixed marriages from falling apart must be
improved. Practical measures in support of single parent households
are also needed.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
Return Emigrants
15.
In the interest of developing existing advising services for return
emigrants, the Expatriate Parliament should investigate possibilities
for receiving government funding to hire an attorney specialising in
expatriate Finns’ issues.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
16.
The Expatriate Parliament must initiate the development of an
information/support centre for return emigrants in Finland.
Tukholman suomalainen seurakunta, Sweden
Educational and Training Issues
SuomiSchools
17.
Funding of SuomiSchools
(a) The Finnish government must support the worldwide study of the
Finnish language by encouraging expatriate communities to establish
SuomiSchools and by securing sufficient funds for the activity.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten keskusliitto, Sweden
(b) Finnish language schools need additional funding to establish new
study groups for children of recently emigrated families.
Central Europe*
(c) The Finnish state and Finish firms sending their staff to work
abroad should provide SuomiSchools and their teachers with more
financial support for the teaching of the Finnish language.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(d) Expatriate communities must be equipped with sufficient resources
so that they may undertake measures to strengthen the position of
Finnish language and culture abroad.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten keskusliitto, Sweden
(e) The Finnish Ministry for Education should extend its support for
SuomiSchools to include SuomiSchools operating in Russia.
Inkerin liiton neuvosto, Russia/Estonia/Sweden
18.
Development of Teachers’ Training.
(a) Opetushallitus must develop regional training sessions for
Suomischools by granting funds for their organisation and by sending
trainers from Finland to them.
Finnish Language Teachers’ Association of Canada
(b) The Expatriate Parliament is requested to negotiate with
opetushallitus and other relevant organisations about the launching of
countryspecific training sessions for teachers of Finnish language
schools.
Central Europe*
(c) More pedagogical training should be made available for
SuomiSchool teachers.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Student Exchange

19.
Ingrian associations and Finland’s Education Ministry should negotiate
an annual student exchange program that would enable 30 Ingrian school
students to spend a semester/year in Finnish schools.
Inkerin liiton neuvosto, Russia/Estonia/Sweden
Adult Education
20.
The Finnish state must support adults studying Finnish abroad as a
foreign language.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Teaching Materials
21.
Production of Teaching Materials
(a) Opetushallitus must produce education material on Finnish language
and culture, that is suitable for expatriate Finns, for distribution
through the Internet.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten keskusliitto, Sweden
(b) Finland must support the production of education materials and
other relevant materials that assist modern, practical language study.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten nuorten liitto, Sweden
(c) Bilingual study materials (e.g. Finnish–English versions of the
same texts) should be developed to ease the adaptation process abroad
for those Finnish children who do not speak the language of the new
country.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
22.
SuomiSchools and expatriate Finnish organisations must have the right
to use Finnish publications free of copyrightrelated payment
liabilities.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
International Education Issues
23.
To facilitate international mobility educational degrees and credits
should be coordinated and information about them made more readily
available.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
24.
Finnish should be recognised as an official optional examination
language at the secondary school level within the European Union.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Youth Issues
25.
Development of leirikoulutoiminta.

(a) Finnish expatriate youth should be assured good opportunities for
participation in camp activities and other events in Finland.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten nuorten liitto, Sweden
(b) Finland Society must secure a budget for an annual expatriate
youth camp focusing on language and culture.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten keskusliitto, Sweden
26.
Expatriate youth require enhanced media services catering to their
special needs, e.g. in the form of Finnish TV programs and websites.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten nuorten liitto, Sweden
27.
A thorough and detailed information packet about the rights and duties
of Finnish citizens should be made available for all young expatriates
as they turn 18 years old.
Central Europe*
Cultural Issues
28.
The Expatriate Parliament should organise a meeting of expatriate and
domestic Finnish writers in Finland.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten kirjoittajien yhdistys, Sweden
29.
The Expatriate Parliament should organise a worldwide campaign for
compiling valuables of Finnish emigrants for storage in a museum in
Finland.
Wollongongin seudun SuomiSeura, Australia
Citizenship Issues
30.
Assuming the Finnish legislature will pass a law allowing double
citizenship, the Finnish state should negotiate reciprocal permitting
of double citizenship with countries that do not as of yet allow it.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
31.
The advancement of double citizenship in Finland is an issue of utmost
importance.
Finnladies of Chicagoland, USA
32.
In the issue of double citizenship, the group of expatriates to which
Finland owes most are those war veterans, who once lost their Finnish
citizenship.
St. Michael’s Finnish Lutheran Church, Canada
Political and Official Matters
Voting Procedures
33.
Voting opportunities for expatriate Finns must be enhanced.
(a) Valtioneuvosto must investigate how expatriate Finns could be
equipped with enhanced voting opportunities.
Riminin SuomiSeura, Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
(b) The following possibilities enhancing expatriates’ voting
opportunities must be considered: voting through mail, increasing the
number of election support staff, expanding voting times at embassies,
and arranging for a voting location ‘on wheels’.
Central Europe*
(c) Possibilities for ennakkoäänestys via mail must be secured for
expatriate Finns.
Madridin SuomiSeura, Spain
34.
The Expatriate Parliament must investigate possibilities for amending
Finnish voting legislation so that expatriate citizens could vote in
any voting district.
Central Europe*
35.
Expatriate Communities and Finnish Embassies’ Cooperation
(a) The Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs should enhance
cooperation between Finland’s embassies and expatriate communities
abroad. Expatriates should be given more consideration in the
selection of honorary consuls.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
(b) The delegation of Finnish embassies’ functions to local expatriate
Finns must be researched.
DeutschFinnische Gesellschaft München e.V., Germany
Other

36.
Finland should reduce visa processing fees for Russian citizens of
Ingrian origin.
Inkerin liiton neuvosto, Russia/Estonia/Sweden
37.
The Expatriate Parliament recognises President Martti Ahtisaari’s
importance in enhancing Finland’s reputation worldwide.
DeutschFinnische Gesellschaft München e.V., Germany
Rules of the Expatriate Parliament
38.
A more precise definition is needed for “expatriate Finn”.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
39.
Expatriate Finnish communities that are unable to send representatives
to the Expatriate Parliament’s sessions should be allowed to vote on
the parliament’s resolutions via mail or email.
St. Michael’s Finnish Lutheran Church, Canada
40.
Conditions for expatriate communities’ participation in the Expatriate
Parliament.
(a) The Expatriate Parliament should make sure that each community
participating in parliament work is legal within its respective
country, accountable to its own membership and to the rules of the
Expatriate Parliament.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(b) Communities must demonstrate genuine links with Finland and show
proof of their operational status.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(c) A minimum membership requirement must be set as a condition for
communities’ participation in the Expatriate Parliament. The number of
representatives sent to the Parliament must be more reflective of a
given community’s total membership and of the total number of Finns in
the respective country. Every parliament representative should speak
either Finnish or Swedish.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
41.
The situation of Finns in Latin America must be reassessed with
respect to the operation of the Expatriate Parliament. A minimum
requirement of two (2) representatives per country/continent/region
present at Expatriate Parliament sessions should be set.
SuomiArgentiina Tutkimuskeskus, Argentina
42.
The Parliament should reexamine the allocation of seats in its
Council and the committees as well as the voting procedures, so that
they provide a fair geographical representation of expatriate
communities..
FinnGuild, Great Britain
43.
The Expatriate Parliament should examine how to secure sufficient
female representation in the Council.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
44.
Sessions of the Expatriate Parliament should hereafter be held in May.
Australasian suomalaisten liitto, Australia/Asia
Information Issues
Development of Information Services for Expatriate Finns
45.
Information about employment and internship possibilities.
(a) Information about camps, courses, exchange and internship programs
geared toward expatriates must be compiled annually in written as well
as electronic form and sent to Finnish expatriate communities.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(b) It is proposed that an information repository be prepared of all
newspapers, websites, agencies, corporations and consulates through
which young people can get professional career advice. Ads should be
placed in relevant media about the availability of the repository.
Finnish Social Counselling Service of Toronto, Canada
(c) It is proposed that a directory be prepared of all government
sponsored educational programs between Canada and Finland. Ads should
be placed in relevant media about the availability of the directory.
Finnish Social Counselling Service of Toronto, Canada
46.
Information flow about the rights and duties of expatriate Finns must
be further enhanced.
Finnladies of Chicagoland, USA
47.
Delivery of information to expatriate Finns on the following matters
is of utmost importance: Finnish social security, pensions,
legislation concerning taxation and divorce, issues related with
return immigration.
Finnladies of Chicagoland, USA
48.
More efficient distribution of information is needed at the local
level after the Expatriate Parliament’s sessions.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
49.
Delivery of information to expatriate Finns through the Internet must
be increased and diversified.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten keskusliitto, Sweden
50.
Cooperation between Expatriate Finns, Finnish Companies and the
Finnish Govt.

(a) The Expatriate Parliament should support the establishment of a
network of expatriate Finns with business contacts, so that the
Finnish government and Finnish companies Could better utilise
expatriates’ expertise.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
(b) Finnish business operating abroad should maintain contact with
expatriate communities and Finnish embassies, and consider expatriates
for employment.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
Support for Finnish Expatriate Media

51.
The Finnish government’s financial support to expatriate newspapers
should be increased.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Other

52.
Finns living in Finland are asked to assume a more positive attitude
toward issues that expatriate Finns find important.
Finnladies of Chicagoland, USA
Financial Issues
Support Funds to Expatriate Communities
53.
The Finnish state must secure the continuation of financial support to
Finnish expatriate organisations as well as SuomiSchools.
Ruotsinsuomalaisten nuorten liitto, Sweden
54.
Support to peripheral areas.
(a) Problems related with representation at Parliament sessions and
information flows for Finns in peripheral areas (Latin America,
Australia, Asia, the Mediterranean, MiddleEast and Africa) must be
considered in committee work. Based on this work, the Speakers’
Council and Secretariat should investigate financial solutions to the
observed problems.
Club SuomiFinlandia Ancona, Italy
(b) The situation of Finns in Latin America must be reassessed with
respect to the operation of the Expatriate Parliament. Support funds
should be given to assure balanced parliament representation.
SuomiArgentiina Tutkimuskeskus, Argentina
55.
Working together with local Finnish groups the Expatriate Parliament
should secure a more fair availability of reductions in travelling
costs for all participants to parliamentary sessions.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
Budget of the Finnish Expatriate Parliament
56.
Regional meetings.
(a) The Expatriate Parliament is asked to draft its own budget. Funds
should be made available for the arrangement of annual regional
meetings by members of the Speakers’ Council.
Central Europe*
(b) The Expatriate Parliament should budget funds for the organisation
of regional Expatriate Parliament meetings between parliamentary
sessions as well as for regular roundtrips by members of the Speakers’
Council in their respective areas.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
57.
The Expatriate Parliament should budget funds for compensating members
of the Speakers’ Council for administrative costs incurred while
working for the parliament.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
58.
The Financial Committee of the Expatriate Parliament should receive by
each parliament session the accounts of the operations of the
parliament during the preceding years as well as a draft budget for
the following parliamentary session.
FinnGuild, Great Britain
* Central Europe: DFG, kielikoulujen pedagoginen neuvosto, SKTK,
FinnGuild, Great Britain and communities from Switzerland and
Netherlands.

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