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Estonia Considers Hiring Unemployed Finnish Police Officers

Estonia is considering alleviating its shortage of police officers by hiring unemployed Finnish police. Estonia has a serious deficit of police, while Finland has about 300 trained police officers without a job. The Estonian police force sees the idea as worthy of consideration. However, decision-makers in Finland have certain reservations. The pay level in Estonia remains well below that in Finland, but average wages and salaries are on the increase in that country. Finnish and Estonian police are also constantly in contact, and joint patrols involving Finnish and Estonian police have been tried successfully in the Estonian city of Pärnu and the island of Saaremaa. Implementing the move would require a change in Estonian legislation, which currently requires that police officers be Estonian citizens. Finland's Minister of the Interior Anne Holmlund notes that there are a number of practical problems. She is concerned about language issues, as well as different levels of police authority in Finland and Estonia.

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