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Helsinki to hike wages for home care and social workers

Starting in March, child protection social workers will receive a salary of 3,495 euros a month.

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Image: Mikko Savolainen / Yle

Helsinki will increase salaries paid to home care and social workers, practical nurses, doctors and dentists to the tune of 4 million euros.

Helsinki's public sector employees such as home care and social workers, and other healthcare workers such as practical nurses, doctors and dentists are set to see a pay rise totaling four million euros annually.

The salary increases will be implemented in three different phases. Some pay hikes will be decided in various municipal and general collective agreements, whereas details regarding increases to be granted by the City of Helsinki in the autumn will be decided at a later date in the spring.

According to Juha Jolkkonen, head of Helsinki's social and healthcare department, employer and employee representatives have negotiated increases on the basis of a collective agreement for certain occupational groups.

“It’s been a long time since something comparable has happened where a nationally-negotiated collective agreement is then locally implemented,” said Jolkkonen.

For example, hospital doctors will see their annual salary increase by about one percent and health centre doctors as well as dentists will see their salaries increase by 2.1 percent.

Unjustified pay differences to be corrected

According to a press release from the City, the goal is to correct unwarranted salary differences that have occurred, following reorganisations in different departments of a hospital or health care centre, for example.

The increases that came into effect at the start of the year are part of the municipal collective agreement. For example, social and health care workers will receive their salary increases by March, while the increase for January and February will be retroactive.

After the raises, home care workers and practical nurses will receive 2,271 euros per month and nurses will receive 2,660 euros a month, for example.

Those with official posts such as adult social workers will receive a new salary of 3, 175 euro a month and child protection social workers will receive a salary of 3,495 euros a month.

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