Some people with disabilities on disability pensions could work part-time.
Way Riikka Ahonvala and Iiris Mikkilä, Executive Director, wrote about the employment of people with disabilities and related issues (HS Opinion 16.6.).
People with disabilities also have the right to work. It is a constitutional right that belongs to everyone, and it is also confirmed by the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which Finland has also ratified. For years, many different disability organizations have talked about the fact that it is people with disabilities who should be involved in working life. In Germany, for example, there is a law that obliges people with disabilities to provide work.
The Social Insurance Institution of Finland often transfers disabled people to disability pension. Mental illness and various injuries are the most common causes. This is a constant violation of the Constitution, which says that every Finn has the right to work, even if he or she has an injury or illness.
No one seems to care about these people. Many of them work in work centers and receive only a few euros a day. In the other Nordic countries, people with partial working capacity are involved in working life, but not in Finland. In Finland, a person’s ability to work is defined in a straightforward way: a person is either able to work or incapable of work. In Sweden, there are five different ways to define how to treat a person with an illness or disability.
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has calculated that in one year the loss of labor input will be about eight billion euros because so many are on disability pension. Many young people are out of work all their lives because they are on a disability pension. The career should just start, but we are already on sick leave. One would think that decision makers would somehow change the system so that anyone who is able to work would even be in part-time work.
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