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Added funds for elder care and sex crime prevention top supplementary budget proposal

Increased allocations proposed by Finland's finance ministry in its first supplementary budget total 10.5 million euros.

Budjettikirjoja eduskunnan täysistunnossa.
Image: AOP

The Finnish Finance Ministry published its first proposal for supplementary allocations to the 2019 budget on Friday, 15 February. Government will first approve or reject the suggested injections of additional money, after which a version of the proposal is expected be presented to Parliament next week.

Recent police suspicions of shocking events in the northwest city of Oulu and reports of gross neglect in some privately-run senior care facilities have led to a ministry call for five million more euros to be directed towards the prevention of sex crimes, and an allocation for the hiring of more inspection personnel on the regional and state level to oversee services catering to the elderly, disabled and early childhood education.

The added five million euros to prevent sex crimes targeting children and youth includes 1.6 million euros more for online policing and 1.5 million euros for relevant educational work in schools.

The ministry proposes an additional 0.3 million euros be granted to youth work, and 800,000 more euros devoted to the launch of a new LASTA model, a new child protection service structure consisting of 18 regional hubs of specialist social service and health care. The new structure aims to provide child friendly investigation and support for all cases of alleged physical or sexual abuse.

Close to five million euros more for Migri

The ministry would also award 4.8 million euros in added funding to the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) for immigration-related security measures. The proposal says the additional funding would be used to improve Migri activities and found a new detention facility in Oulu.

Among other technical adjustments, the first supplementary budget proposal of 2019 also revises down its tax revenue estimate to reach a figure 196 million euros lower than was originally forecast.

In this latest iteration of the Finnish budget for 2019, expenditure estimates increased by 80 million euros, while revenue estimates were reduced by 190 million, meaning that the proposal increases the government's net borrowing requirement by 270 million euros.

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