Case Downtown Helsinki: How the police ethnically profile people

by , under Enrique Tessieri

During the weekend, the police service together with the Finnish Border Guard wilfully targetted foreigners for spot identity checks in Helsinki, Espoo, and Vantaa. Migrant Tales heard of a case in Kamppi where four young men were walking. The police allegedly stopped two young Finns, one who was black- and brown-skinned. 

The police did not stop their two friends, who were white Finns.

Both the black and brown-skinned young men showed their passports and told the police they are Finns. One at the officers turned his attention to the brown-skinned man and suggested that the passport didn’t make him a Finn.


Näyttökuva 2016-4-5 kello 23.19.35
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“What’s your mother tongue?” the police asked.


“You see you aren’t a Finn because your mother tongue is Arabic,” the police said.

The black Finn moved away from the police and from a safe distance told them out loud he is an “African Finn.”

If this story is true, it shows how the police ethnically profile people who aren’t white Finns.

It’s a shame that more migrants and minorities don’t videotape such conversations and upload them to YouTube or send them to Migrant Tales.