A poll showed that close to 80% of the police surveyed consider the asylum seeker crisis as the most serious threat to Finnish security, according to YLE News. Another important matter that the poll revealed was that 25.1% of those polled voted for the National Coalition Party (NCP) and 24.4% for the Perussuomalaiset (PS).*
The interesting and worrying question that the poll brings forth is what attitudes does the police service have towards cultural diversity? How do they see migrants and minorities in Finland?
The poll offers us as well an answer why the police, whose authority is rarely questioned in Finland, has fumbled the ball and given mixed statements concerning vigilante patrols, exaggerated alleged sexual harassment crimes by asylum seekers that didn’t pan out as they thought, and even singled out migrant entrepreneurs who sell pizzas for under six euros to name a few.
What does the police really think about migrants and minorities? Does it ethnically profile such minorities?
Doesn’t the police consider hate speech, arson attacks against asylum reception centers, and the rise of the far right in Finland greater threats?
Like Finland, the police too suffers from dear little cultural diversity among its ranks. There is only one black policeman in all of Finland. How many policemen and policewomen speak Arabic?
Read full story here.
The fact that about half of those police surveyed said they voted for the NCP and PS suggests why they considered asylum seekers as the biggest threat to Finnish security. All this does is destroy the credibility of the police service among migrants and Finns who aren’t white like them.
The police service in Finland is also guilty of labeling Others as “persons with foreign ethnic background” and/or “persons with migrant background.” Officially, a Finnish citizen is a Finn but the police continue to see “Finns” as white.
Even if National Police Commissioner Seppo Kolehmainen claims that the Finnish police service has zero tolerance for racism, the latest poll result and other examples question how seriously they challenge racism.
A sad example of the latter is how three Iraqi asylum seekers were recently treated by the police.
* The Finnish name for the Finns Party is the Perussuomalaiset (PS). The English names of the party adopted by the PS, like True Finns or Finns Party, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and xenophobia. We, therefore, prefer to use the Finnish name of the party on our postings.