Prime Minister Juha Sipilä’s government is one of the most hostile ever towards migrants

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Since when has a Finnish government tightened immigration policy the way Prime Minister Juha Sipilä’s government has? There was the last government that tightened family reunification guidelines but that’s all I can remember. Is Siplä’s government one of the most hostile towards migrants and our ever-growing culturally diverse society?

Why so much hostility?

One answer to the above question is the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party, which is a partner in government with the Center Party and National Coalition Party (NCP).

But to blame one party for the rise of xenophobia in Finland would be simplistic. If we look more closely we’ll find the answer right under our noses: The government is formed by three parties. Finland’s politicians, the media and public have done little to stand up against racism and defend the traditional values and beliefs of our Nordic welfare state.

In other words, our society has lacked leadership and vision. We have fallen into the right-wing populist trap: solutions are simple because the argument is black and white.

The rise of the PS, like Donald Trump in the US and other ultranationalistic leaders like Marine Le Pen are sirens telling us that our democratic system is in deep trouble.

The rise of the PS, and its participation in government with the Center Party and NCP, is a similar wake-up call that we are on a perilous path.

So what makes this government one of the most hostile in recent Finnish history towards migrants, asylum seekers, minorities and our ever-growing culturally diverse society?

Below are a few reasons why:

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. The direct translation of “Perussuomalaiset” is “basic” or “fundamental Finn.” 

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