Advance voting in municipal elections begins on Wednesday 26 May

Ministry of Justice
19.5.2021 16.44
Press release

The advance voting period for the 2021 municipal elections will begin in Finland on Wednesday 26 May and last for two weeks. The final day for advance voting is Tuesday 8 June.

There will be a total of 930 general advance polling stations in Finland. They are mainly located at town halls, libraries and shopping centres. Many municipalities will also provide a possibility for advance voting outdoors, for example in tents and other shelters. A possibility for drive-in voting will also be provided in some municipalities. A list of the outdoor polling stations is available on the Electionsfinland.fi website.

Abroad, advance voting will be arranged between 2 and 5 June. There will be more than a hundred advance polling stations abroad, located at Finnish diplomatic or consular missions or their offices in over 70 different countries. Some of the advance polling stations will be open only on certain days during the advance voting period. Eligible voters staying abroad during the elections may also vote by post.

Information on the advance polling stations, candidates and candidate numbers is available on the Electionsfinland.fi website.

Election day is Sunday 13 June. On election day, voters may only vote at the polling station mentioned on the polling card sent to them before the elections, whereas during the advance voting period, voters may cast their vote at any of the general advance polling stations in Finland or abroad.

Instructions on safe voting during COVID-19

The Electionsfinland.fi website contains instructions for voters on safe voting in the municipal elections during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Voters must wear a face mask or covering, use hand sanitiser and stay two metres away from others at the polling station. Election officials will monitor safety at the polling stations and advise voters on how to follow the instructions. Voters may bring their own pen to the polling station if they so wish.

Special measures have been planned to enable voters placed in quarantine or isolation by a doctor or having respiratory symptoms to vote. Voters can contact the central municipal election board of their municipality to ask about these special arrangements.  

Eligible voters in municipal elections

People who reach the age of 18 years on election day at the latest have the right to vote in the municipal elections in their municipality of residence. In addition to Finnish citizens, those citizens of EU Member States, Iceland and Norway who have a municipality of residence in Finland are also entitled to vote. Other foreign citizens are entitled to vote if they have had a municipality of residence in Finland for at least two years.

The Digital and Population Data Services Agency sends a notice of right to vote (polling card) to all eligible voters. A list of advance polling stations close to the eligible voter’s place of residence and instructions on safe voting during the COVID-19 epidemic are enclosed to the notice.

The notices of right to vote are sent by post. The notice is sent in electronic format to those eligible voters who have activated the Suomi.fi Messages service and given their consent for all official notifications to be sent to them electronically.

Proof of identity

Voters must present some form of official photo ID when voting, for example a passport, an identity card or a driving licence. The old cardboard driving licence will also be accepted as proof of identity, if the voter can be identified from the photo and the election official can thus reliably verify the voter's identity. Voters who do not have a valid proof of identity can obtain a temporary identity card free of charge from the police for voting purposes.

Election officials may ask voters to briefly remove their face mask to verify their identity.

Information about municipal elections is available through many channels and in several languages

The Electionsfinland.fi website provides information about municipal elections in many languages (Finnish, Swedish, Skolt Sámi, Inari Sámi, North Sámi, and the Finnish and Finland-Swedish Sign Languages, and several most used foreign languages, such as English, Estonian and Russian). In addition, the YouTube channel of the Ministry of Justice contains videos on voting in easy-to-understand language and sign language. Brochures in easy-to-read Finnish and Swedish are also available.

Follow voter turnout online

The Electionsfinland.fi website will also provide real-time information on the voter turnout during the advance voting period. Information on the number of advance voters in each municipality and in the entire country will be updated on the website every hour during the advance voting period.

Inquiries:
Heini Huotarinen, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 295 150 127, [email protected]
Laura Nurminen, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 295 150 008, [email protected]
Arto Jääskeläinen, Director of Electoral Administration, tel. +358 295 150 128, [email protected]

Reliable information about elections is available at www.electionsfinland.fi
Instructions for voters on safe voting during COVID-19
Candidates in the 2021 municipal elections
Electionsfinland.fi on Twitter
Electionsfinland.fi on Facebook
Election videos on Youtube
Elections helpline: 0800 9 4770 (in Finnish) and 0800 9 4771 (in Swedish)
WhatsApp service for election-related questions: +358 50 438 8730