It’s so amusing to read about “under the table” jobs as if the participants were committing murder. This is a huge difference in attitude between the Finns and Americans. The article uses words like “shady”, “wrestles with his conscience”, and “temptation” to describe the people involved in this practice. Pleaseee….
PAM reports that its Helsinki office is contacted about once a week by someone who has been offered undocumented work. The information comes by telephone. “They want to remain faceless. Common sense dictates that these kinds of things will not bear the light of day”, says Irmeli Mäenpää, head of the office. Jussi sometimes wrestles with his conscience. “But I will have time to pay plenty of those taxes when I get a regular job.”
People involved in the grey economy are rarely well off financially. Like the article says, it’s often restaurants, probably just trying to make ends meet, offering this undocumented work because the state makes it too costly to do legally. And the workers, often students and young people like the article states, are struggling with the high youth unemployment in Finland – they either they take the under the table jobs or they’re broke and unemployed.
In addition to young people, immigrants are newcomers to the Finnish labour market, and as such, are subject to offers from shady characters.
These under the table jobs are mostly temporary anyways, few people do this work for long periods of time. And you usually get paid daily, so if the boss screws you over, you just tell him to suck it…and you never return. But I guess the state would rather we immigrants and young people sit home and collect the welfare, and have the small shops and restaurants go bankrupt?