Ms. Tytti Tuppurainen, M.A., Oulu, Finland
Member of the Finnish Parliament (since 2011) / Social Democratic Parliamentary Group
Leader of the Social Democratic Parliamentary Group since 7.9.2023
Member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Parliament of Finland (Chair of the Committee 28.6. – 15.9.2023)
Leader of the Social Democratic Women in Finland
Chair of the Party´s Foreign and Security Policy Working Group (previously Chair of the Europe Working Group 2012-2023)
Representative of the Social Democratic Women in Finland to the Social Democratic Party Executive Board
Member of the PES (Party of European Social Democrats) Presidency
Minister for European Affairs and Ownership Steering 2019-2023
Second Deputy Chairperson of Parliament´s Grand Committee (EU Affairs) and member of Agriculture and Forestry Committee 2011-2019
Member of the Oulu City Council 2000-
Member of the Council Wellbeing Services County Of North Ostrobothnia 2022-
Chairman of the Council of Oulu Region (2005-2009 and 2017-2019)
Chairman of the UN Association of Finland (2018-2019)
Former Member of the JHL Union Council (The Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors)
Former Chair of the Board of the Finnish 4H Federation
Former Chair of the Board of the Oulu City Theatre
Mother of two. Husband Pertti Rauhio (since 2014) is the Director of Administration of the Finnish Parliament.
Masters of Philosophy, Oulu University, 2003. Main subjects were German Philology and minor in political science and sociology. Graduated from Merikoski High School in 1994 with honors.
Language skills: Finnish, German, English, and Swedish, studying Russian.
Before becoming a Member of the Finnish Parliament, Tytti worked as a R&D Coordinator for the Oulu University of Applied Sciences, Oulu UAS School of Music, Dance and Media. Tytti has also had various tasks with House for Sustainable Development: Project Manager and Public Relations, and CEO for Oulu Ekotuote Ltd. (Recycling and Environmental Waste Management).
Some central ideas
Everyone is entitled to an uncomplicated and secure everyday life. Therefore, we must ensure good quality and adequately staffed basic services such as daycare, schooling, health care and services for the elderly.
High employment is the fountain of our well-being. We must ensure a sufficient level of social security and eliminate poverty.
Know-how is a key to the future, so therefore we must not compromise the standards of higher education and research. Development must be sustainable: each individual as well as our environment must be well looked after. Our culture can blossom only in an unprejudiced atmosphere.
My values in decision-making
Our way of thinking should be comprehensive rather than black and white, fundamental thinking, which in fact makes me flinch a little. I personally feel, for instance, that no person is either good nor bad, but some are weaker than others. Humanism to me represents the acceptance of these multifaceted complexities.
Sustainable development means much more to me than just meaningless froth that one often comes across in regional politics. I use it to describe a certain kind of ideology where change is in constant movement between extremities of entirety. Change should never be static, but a process in which we all have an important and active role. Politics is about making value choices in regards to which extremity one wants to strive for. To me sustainable development is about everyday choices.
In my dreams, I see a world where everyone is able to fulfil oneself in a meaningful way. Everyone acts to the best interest of not only them selves, but also towards the society in a way that doesn’t harm our environment. Everyone should have an equal right to a good life. Good things for everyone – a dream easily sneered at. Freedom, equality and solidarity are very important values to me. Freedom means freedom to fulfil oneself. It doesn’t mean selfishness. Equality means equal opportunities, not equalizing. Solidarity means shared responsibility, responsibility of oneself and caring about others.
I believe social democracy is an ideology of progression. Yet some claim it to be conservative, because it defends our society and services. However, defending a society that is founded on freedom, equality and solidarity is not stagnation. True conservatism objects to those social reformations, which have already been carried through, and progressive politics aim to implement more effectively. I joined the social democrat party because SDP is not one thought movement. Perceiving society as a whole is important to me. One of SDP’s core values is to take responsibility of the development of the whole society. I would also like to emphasise the importance of work and employment. Everyone should have access to work as well as good life.
Social democracy is the answer to the challenges of our time
We improve the credibility of the democratic decision-making
Social democracy has throughout its history rejected the rise of destructive extremism and offered people a credible vision of a better tomorrow and sensible social policy through moderate reforms. It is necessary to strengthen its power and capabilities right now, when extremist movements based on fear, hatred and ignorance are emerging in Europe and the rest of the world.
Social democracy has the responsibility to offer better policy to its citizens, which is based on scientific research and the belief that only democracy with the equality of people and involvement in the society can guarantee sustainable development. Decision-making must be transparent. Citizens must be provided with sufficient information on political decisions and they have to be provided proper channels for dialogue with policy makers.
We need more open global economy
Peace, sustainable development and the joint care of the planet require international cooperation to succeed. Social democracy is an international movement that has to promote unity and cooperation, especially now. The United Nations’ and other international organizations’ ability to exercise power and operate need to be strengthen and encouraged. We need to keep in mind that in the world superpower nations, Finland is more vulnerable than in the world of cooperation.
An active European policy is in Finland’s interest. The EU must be a strong player in foreign and security policy, as well as a defender of free trade and globalization. EU’s internal market, open world economy and free trade agreements are of vital importance to Finland, as our nation is greatly dependent on foreign export. Going back on globalization would be a disaster to the world’s poor. However, it is essential to ensure that trade rules are ethical and are of high standards. We need to adhere to the rules of working life, environmental standards and the protection of consumers’ rights.
Investments in education is the key to development and full citizenship
Social democracy is built on trust in people and the ability to work together to build a better world. Education and culture are the lifeblood of democracy and free and responsible citizenship. Culture is not an expenditure item, but an investment to the vitality and creativity of a nation.
Early childhood education is estimated to be the most effective education investment. Most importantly it will benefit children with challenging family circumstances. A complete subjective right to day care must be reinstated in Finland, and the goal should be a gradual transition to free early childhood education. The age of compulsory education has to be extended to 18 years, while ensuring that different types of learners have the right tools to education and to experience success.
In a truly equal civilized state, the people have the right to objective information. It is vital to safeguard free media.
Responsibility for the conditions of growth
Social democratic economic policy is built in a market economy. Every able-bodied must have the possibility to support themselves and prosper through their own work or entrepreneurship. The objective is a high rate of employment accordingly to the Nordic welfare model. Female employment needs to be further promoted. Long-term unemployment is combatted with determined employment policy, where the unemployed are not blamed for their situation and people’s ability to work is taken care of.
The state must create the conditions for growth. Essential elements in it are a stable platform for investments and the society’s predictable social infrastructure. The state can have an active ownership policy, but principally the business risks have to be carried by the private sector. The most lucrative investments for the state are skills and education, research and product development. A functioning infrastructure and taking care of public health are imperative for a state when we face times of slow growth.
Our society of cooperation needs to be valued and its continuity safeguarded.
Sociological and ecological sustainability are our lifeblood
Economic growth and prosperity are not sustainable unless our environmental survival is taken into account. Global environmental politics now face a new challenge: economic recession has led states to lean on more and more closed politics.However, environmental threats do not care about borders, so to contain them, we need further international cooperation.
The goal of Social Democracy is the welfare of people and nature. We do not need to choose between our own welfare and the welfare of nature, as both can be achieved through long-term policy based on knowledge and cooperation.