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Social Enterprise Legislation in Finland

Pekka Pättiniemi
Gdansk, 26th of June 2008.

In this short paper I analyse the content of the Finnish Act on Social Enterprises (1351/2003) its applicability and compare it to some other national European legislation on social enterprises. Finland is one of the Nordic Countries with universal welfare state. The responsibility to take care of those in need is on the public sector. Since the Second World War municipalities and other public sector entities have established over 300 work centres and sheltered workshops to employ disadvantaged persons. There was no real need for social enterprises before the 1990 ́s. when the mass employment and deep economic crises in beginning of 1990 ́s changed the situation idea of self-help work integration enterprises rose among the unemployed and their associations. The economic crises affected heavily also to the work centers for disabled they have to cut their rehabilitation activities to survive, search for new markets for their products and new ways of organizing themselves.

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Source:Pekka Pättiniemi