Finland

Finland regularly reports hate crime data to ODIHR. Finland's hate crime laws consist of a general penalty-enhancement provision. Reported police data include discrimination and defamation offences, although these can be disaggregated. Data on the numbers of prosecutions and sentenced cases are only reported for discrimination cases. Hate crime data are collected by the Police University College of Finland's Research Department, the Interior Ministry, the Prosecutor's Office, the Ministry of Justice and Statistics Finland. Finland conducts regular victimization surveys to measure unreported hate crime.

SELECT YEAR

Official Data

Year Hate crimes recorded by police Prosecuted Sentenced About these data
2017 1497 63 37
2016 1311 N/A N/A
2015 1704 Not available Not available
2014 954 Not available Not available
2013 904 Not available Not available

Hate crimes recorded by police

A total of 1556 hate crimes were originally reported to ODIHR. The number of crime reports was 1165, as one crime report can include several hate crimes. This number included cases of ethnic agitation, defamation and discrimination, which were removed and are not presented here. For the first time, and with the consent of the Roma community, hate crime against Roma people are included as a new category.

National developments

Based on a MoU with ODIHR, the Finnish police have been implementing the TAHCLE programme. Around 900 officers have received training on hate crimes to date. Training events have contributed to a measured increase in identification of hate motive (24 per cent in 2016 to 39 per cent in 2017).

The Ministry of Interior increased funding to address hate crime, which was identified as a priority area in the Police Strategy in 2016. The funding was used, among other things, to appoint 25 hate crime specialists to Helsinki Police Department.

Since December 2017, the Ministry of Justice has been co-ordinating an EU-funded project called Against Hate. One of the main objectives of the project is to further develop the national reporting mechanisms, especially regarding statistics on prosecution and sentencing of hate crime. The project also aims at enhancing the capacity of the police, prosecutors and judges to act against hate crime and hate speech, and to develop support services for victims of hate crime.

As part of the EU-funded project PROXIMITY, the Ministry of Justice is supporting the capacities of local authorities and especially municipal policing to prevent and identify hate crimes and other forms of intolerance.

Key observation

ODIHR observes that Finland has met most OSCE commitments on hate crime data collection and reporting.