Election platform of the Greens in Helsinki 2011
We have the opportunity to choose. Will we leave our children with clean nature and a welfare state or just polluted land and an enormous debt? The Greens steer Finland towards a controlled change. Our goal is to increase happiness instead of consumption.
Green economy brings work and sustainable wellbeing
Ecologically sustainable social and economical systems are not only possible – they are a necessity. In a green economy it’s the polluter who pays. Congestion charges and taxation of energy, environmental damage and consumption will help us to ease income taxes. Income taxation should be gradual to even out the burden of ones on the lowest income levels.
In a green economy we support service production and the development of environmentally friendly technologies instead of junk-producing forced consumption. This creates new jobs. The green working life is flexible and it’s possible to employ more people by distributing work more evenly.
Protecting the nature and the environment
Climate change is changing the habitats of the world fast and unpredictably. We need a climate law that binds us to an annual 5 % decrease in greenhouse gas emissions. It’s possible to cut down pollution by improving energy efficiency and switching to renewable energy resources. We don’t want nuclear power because we don’t want nuclear waste and uranium mines. Taxation of peat in energy use should be tightened and we have to aim towards gradually ending the energy use of peat.
Public transportation should be made more attractive and affordable. The state should subsidise public transport services within the greater Helsinki region instead of building new highways. We need faster railways and a train tunnel to Tallinn. Cities should be built with pedestrians and cyclists on mind.
The forests have not been protected well enough. The forest industry poses a threat both to the biodiversity of nature and the recreational value of the forests. Forest owners should have a legal possibility for basing their forest management on non-clearcut forestry..
To save the Baltic Sea the nutrient pollution from agriculture should be finally restricted enough. The right that we all have to the clean sea has a higher value than the farmers’ right to pollute the water.
The Ministry of the Environment should not be abolished but it’s position in protecting the nature and the environment should be strengthened.
The way animals are treated in the Finnish agriculture is a disgrace. Instead of image campaigns we want real improvements in animal well-being. Fur farming should be banned. The consumers want local and ecologically produced food instead of industrial convenience food. That’s why we need to further develop the production and resale of organic food.
Defending the weak
High-quality daycare, education and health care are something that everyone’s entitled to. The success of Finland is based on high-quality teaching, education and research. That is why studying should stay free of charge and the school system should be granted with sufficient funding. We need more possibilities to study in vocational schools in Helsinki.
We are not equal when it comes to health. More efforts are needed in primary health care and preventive health care. The complex funding system of health care services should be simplified. Medical treatment should not be the only treatment in mental health care and drug rehabilitation services. The elderly should have humane treatment facilities and there should also be enough support for them to live at home.
We need to take care of the weak ones of society. The well fare system we have is a malfunctioning mess. A basic income guarantee would give a just security system for everybody and remove the polarisation between basic unemployment security and earnings-related unemployment security. It would also make it easier for unemployed people to get further education and seek work.
We are all equal
Everyone benefits from equality. No one should be rejected. The Greens aim towards complete equality between men and women and want the gender pay gap to be actively narrowed.
Families should be supported so that everyone has a chance to grow up safely. While building society we should realise that there are also other family forms than the traditional nuclear family. Finland needs an equal marriage law. The costs of family leaves should be divided between all the employers.
The green’s immigration policies are based on humanity. It’s OK to come to Finland to seek work, asylum or a better life. Enough resources should be granted to the social integration of immigrants. It is important for the immigrants to learn the language, to be able to get work and to participate in decision-making. Immigrants should also be able to practice their profession more easily and effectively and the bureaucracy in the integration process should be minimized.
Let the voice of the city be heard
Finland should be open and democratic. The election system should be renewed so that everyone’s vote is equal. Direct and binding referendums have to be enabled both regionally and nationally. Funding of parties and candidates should be open and fair.
The greater Helsinki region is the only metropolitan area in Finland. It needs its own administration where decisions can be made together and where residents can make their voices heard. That’s why the municipalities should be joined and within the area elected district councils should be established.
Global responsibility and security
Responsibility of other people and the environment spreads over country borders. The international decision-making process should fight climate change, improve human rights and steer the rules of world trade towards a fairer direction. Development aid should decrease poverty and Finland should use 0,7 % of its gross national income for it.
The Greens want the European Union to function better and to be more open. The EU has a wide variety on means to prevent crises. Instead of military operations we should focus on peacekeeping and helping people. The Greens support selective conscription. There is no need for Finland to join NATO.
The structures of world trade weaken the third world countries’ chances to improve living conditions for its people. They also weaken the Nordic well-fare state. The Greens demand nature to be put before economy, a fairer world trade and regulations for the financial market.