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Finland launches campaign to prevent disinformation ahead of elections

Finland launches campaign to prevent disinformation ahead of elections

“Elections in Finland are reliable – cast your vote” aims to prepare voters for the municipal elections on 13 June

On 20 May, the Finnish government announced the launch of a communication campaign run by the Ministry of Justice, the Prime Minister’s Office, and the National Emergency Supply Agency. “Elections in Finland are reliable – cast your vote” seeks to encourage citizens to safely exercise their democratic right to vote.

Municipal elections will be held on 13 June 2021

Generally, the Finnish municipal elections are held on the third Sunday of April. If this date falls on Easter Sunday, they are postponed until the following week. This year, however, the epidemiological situation in Finland forced the government to postpone the elections even further.

As such, the 2021 municipal elections will be held on Sunday 13 June. According to the government, the advance voting period will take place from 26 May to 8 June in Finland and from 2 June to 5 June abroad.

Aims of the communication campaign

Through “Elections in Finland are reliable – cast your vote”, the government hopes to encourage people to vote. Taking this further, it seeks to ensure that voters comply with the safety regulations which are currently in force and are respectful of other people’s opinions and choices.

More importantly, it aims to prevent disinformation related to the elections by reminding voters of the importance of media literacy. Therefore, it wants to redirect people to reliable sources of information that have been provided by authorities.

Four well-known celebrities in Finland are taking part in this campaign: Pirjo Nuotio (Journalist), Heikki Hursti (Philanthropist), Sara Parikka (Actress) and Henrik Dettman (Coach of the Finnish national basketball team). More specifically, they each star in a short video where they discuss disinformation, COVID, and the importance of respecting people’s choices.

Campaign materials are predominantly in Finnish and Swedish; however, key points are relayed in English and other common languages used by residents in Finland. “Elections in Finland are reliable – cast your vote” will appear on television and radio as well as on printed and online media.

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