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Professor: Position Of Foreign Berry Pickers Unconstitutional

Seppo Koskinen, Professor in Labour Law at the University of Lapland, says that foreigners hired to come to Finland to pick berries are being treated unconstitutionally. According to Professor Koskinen, pickers are being exploited and they should be paid better wages.

Image: YLE

Koskinen points out that traditionally Finland has been a welfare state that has observed the principle that anyone working in the country is also covered by Finnish labour practices.

"Looking at it from this perspective, the situation is not even in line with our labour legislation. Indeed, it is illegal, one could say it is unconstitutional, in violation of the good principles behind the law. This abuse should be stopped," Seppo Koskinen told YLE.

He added the opinion that Finnish operators who hire foreign pickers are responsible for paying a decent wage.

"Perhaps there would be a realistic way to handle the matter. Finnish employers could take care of it at least somewhat better. The other way would be for labour protection authorities to devote more effort to the inspection of employment conditions," Professor Koskinen suggested.

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