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1960s

Rehabilitation has long traditions in Finland, reaching as far back as the late 19th century. As a form of compensation for injured employees, it was recognised already in the Employees Accident Insurance Act of 1948: under law, accident insurance institutions had to pay the rehabilitation of recipients of accident insurance compensation. However, the forms of rehabilitation to which recipients were entitled had not been defined.

In the early 1960s, discussion began over the organisation of rehabilitation activities, and official guidelines were drawn up in the 1963 act on the rehabilitation of recipients of accident compensation.

In addition to FAII, new rehabilitation activities were also being planned by motor and earnings-related pension insurance institutions. The decision was made to combine forces and in 1964, the newly founded Vakuutusalan Kuntouttamiskeskus (VKK) was launched as a joint project between FAII and the Motor Insurers’ Centre. The following year, the Finnish Pension Alliance TELA also joined in the collaboration.

The 1939 law on occupational diseases was reformed in 1967. In the new law, virtually all illnesses could be considered occupational diseases, provided that their principal cause was a physical, chemical or biological factor specified by the law and present in the work. The law required that a causal link must be demonstrated between the agent and the disease. The Ministry maintained an indicative list of illnesses accepted as occupational diseases.

“As a guideline for diagnosing occupational diseases, the Ministry for Social Affairs must issue a list of examples of underlying factors causing illnesses covered as occupational diseases and of the forms of the diseases, as well as of the lines of work known to pose risk of such diseases.”

After the wars, Finland industrialised at a rapid pace and efforts to improve safety at work and accidents developed quickly from the 1960s onwards. The matter was considered important and attracted broad interest. One of the great improvements of the decade was the deepening of co-operation between employees and employers as parties to accident insurance. In 1967, this led to the formation of an advisory committee serving as a body for dialogue and co-operation between parties in the labour market.

In addition, the parties in the labour market agreed in 1969 on the establishment of occupational safety and health committees.

The idea to nationalise accident insurance based on the Swedish model re-emerged in the 1960s, but in the end, no reason could be found for replacing the private system in use in Finland. Still, laws and decrees began to define the position and duties of FAII in more detail than previously.

Työväenvakuutus-lehti, the magazine published by FAII since 1928, was renamed the Tapaturmavakuutus Magazine in 1963. During the decade, the Federation’s representatives were Pertti Niemistö (1960-1961), Juhani Salminen (1961-1963) and Erkki Mänttäri (1963-1971).