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Timo Olavi Harakka (born December 31, 1962) is a Finnish politician, journalist and author. Since April 2015, he has represented the electoral district of Uusimaa in the Parliament of Finland as a Social Democrat.[1] In June 2019, he was appointed Minister of Employment in the Rinne Cabinet.[2]

Timo Harakka
Timo Harakka.jpg
Minister of Labour
Assumed office
June 6, 2019 (2019-06-06)
Prime MinisterAntti Rinne
Preceded byJari Lindström
Member of Parliament
Assumed office
April 22, 2015 (2015-04-22)
Personal details
Born (1962-12-31) December 31, 1962 (age 56)
Helsinki, Finland
Political partySocial Democratic Party of Finland
EducationMaster of Arts
Alma materHelsinki Theatre Academy
ProfessionJournalist, author


Harakka was born in Helsinki. Both parents his were deaf and therefore his first language is Finnish sign language. He worked as a journalist for several years and has been editor-in-chief of both Jyväskylän Ylioppilaslehti, magazine of the students' union of the University of Jyväskylä, and Vihreä Lanka, magazine linked with the Green League. Since 1997 Harakka worked for Yle and hosted television programs called Musta laatikko, Pressiklubi, and 10 kirjaa.[3] In 2005 he graduated from the Helsinki Theatre Academy with a master of arts in theatre and drama.[4]

In the 2014 European Parliament election Harakka received 22,839 votes and was elected substitute member of the European Parliament for the Social Democratic Party.[5] In the 2015 Finnish parliamentary election he received 5,497 votes from Uusimaa and was elected to the Parliament.[6] He is currently the Finance and budget spokesperson of the parliamentary group and member of the Grand Committee of the Parliament.[1] On December 15, 2016 Harakka announced his candidacy for the leadership of Social Democratic Party.[7] He was defeated by the incumbent party leader Antti Rinne in the election on February 4, 2017.[8] On June 6, 2019, he was appointed Minister of Employment. Harakka is well known for colourful initiatives and statements. He has described Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament as “incredible”, and compared it to "banning saunas in Finland".[9].


  1. ^ a b Timo Harakka Parliament of Finland (in English). Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  2. ^ "Government of Prime Minister Antti Rinne". Finnish Government. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  3. ^ Kuka? Timo Harakka's website (in Finnish). Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  4. ^ Timo Harakka Parliament of Finland (in Finnish). Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  5. ^ Candidates elected Ministry of Justice of Finland (in English). Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  6. ^ Candidates elected Ministry of Justice of Finland (in English). Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  7. ^ Backbench MP launches bid for SDP leadership Yle News (in English). December 15, 2016. Retrieved January 4, 2017.
  8. ^ Rinne wins SDP chair position Yle News on February 4, 2017. Retrieved April 8, 2017.
  9. ^ Timo Harakka’s challenge: to increase employment in Finland

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