One-fifth of Finland's employed labour force is employed by a local or joint authority.
There are 295 local and about 117 joint authorities in Finland and together they employ some 419 000 people.
In Finland, local authorities provide basic public services for their residents.
They are responsible for child day care and education, health and medical care and care for the elderly.
They also provide water services, energy supply, waste management and environmental protection in municipalities.
The municipalities can produce services themselves, purchase services from the private sector, or produce them in co-operation with other municipalities.
Development of the number of the municipal personnel
The number of personnel in the municipal sector grew quickly in the 1970s and 1980s, a period of expansion in welfare services. The number of personnel dropped in the recession years of the early 1990s, but started to rise again in the middle of the decade.
In 2017, the municipal sector employed 419 000 people.
Nearly 87% of monthly salaried employees in the municipal sector are employed on full-time contracts. Three-quarters of all employees have permanent jobs.
Women account for about 80% of municipal personnel.
The average age of personnel is 45,8 years; the permanent employees are a little bit older.