European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI)


NATIONAL DISCRIMINATION TRIBUNAL
FINLAND

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Background
Mandate
Internal Organisation
Activities

CONTACT

Background 

The National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland was created and empowered under the Non-Discrimination Act, which came into force on 1 February 2004 in order to implement the Council Directives 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC. The National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland was appointed to its duty on 19 February 2004.

Mandate 

The National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland supervises the implementation of the principle of equality, jointly with the Ombudsman for Minorities.

The Non-Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination for example on the basis of ethnic or national origin. The Act also prohibits reprisals. Nobody must be disadvantaged or subject to negative consequences as a result of any appeal or other action taken in order to secure equality.

The National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland is a permanent and independent body promoting legal protection. Like the judgments of courts of law, the decisions of the Tribunal have a binding effect. The Government of Finland has appointed the judges of the Tribunal.

The National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland may confirm conciliated settlements between parties or prohibit any continued or repeated behaviour that infringes the prohibition of discrimination or reprisals. The Tribunal may also impose conditional fines to enforce compliance with its decisions, and order payment of fines.

Decisions of the Tribunal may be appealed to an administrative court. The competent administrative court is the one in the judicial district of which the person allegedly discriminated against resides.

The Tribunal may examine cases of discrimination based on ethnic origin, except those involving supervision of the prohibition of discrimination in employment and public service. Recruitment grounds, working conditions, terms of employment, traineeships and career advancement are beyond the scope of the Tribunal. Matters of discrimination in employment and public service should be referred to the local occupational safety and health inspectorate.

The National Discrimination Tribunal does not replace existing legal remedies or review tribunals. The Tribunal is not empowered to revise the decisions of other public authorities.

Internal Organisation 

The Judges of the National Discrimination Tribunal of Finland are headed by a Chair, a Vice Chair, the District Prosecutor of the Helsinki Prosecution Unit and a Judge-Rapporteur. In addition, five judges and six deputy judges make up the Tribunal.

Activities 

Advice

A petitioner is entitled to send the petition to the National Discrimination Tribunal by post or by e-mail. The Tribunal gives counselling concerning the proceedings of the Tribunal. Petitioners can have juridical counselling from the Office of the Ombudsman for Minorities or from a legal aid office.

Opinions

Courts, the Ombudsman for Minorities, other public authorities or voluntary associations may request an opinion from the National Discrimination Tribunal concerning the interpretation of the Non-Discrimination Act on matters concerning ethnic discrimination.

CONTACT 

National Discrimination Tribunal
Syrjintälautakunta
P.O. Box 34
FIN-00023 GOVERNMENT
Tel: + 358 9 10 60 48049
Fax: + 358 9 10 60 48058
E-mail: syrjintalautakunta@mol.fi