STA, 25 February 2019 - A dentist from north-eastern Slovenia has been found guilty of discriminating against an HIV patient in what is the first such ruling in Slovenia, a decision considered a key milestone in discrimination case law.
This is the first time a healthcare employee was found guilty of discriminating against an HIV patient, the newspaper Večer says on Monday about the court case that was closed to the public.
The dentist was ordered to pay EUR 2,700 in compensation to her former patient by the Maribor Higher Court in mid-2018.
The HIV-infected man saw the dentist in March 2016 and told her during the first visit that he was being treated for HIV. The dentist sent him for a dental x-ray.
The next week, when he came back for treatment, she told him he should get a new dentist. In court, the dentist claimed that she sent him away because she had only one set of particular instruments, which she could not sterilise in one afternoon.
However, both the first and the second instance courts ruled against her. The patient was eventually admitted by another dentist working at the same health centre, Večer reports.
The man reported the incident to Patient's Rights Ombudsman Vlasta Cafnik, who turned for help to the Medical Chamber but did not receive any response despite sending several emails and letters to several people in the organisation.
The patient also turned to the healthcare inspectorate, which responded that the Medical Chamber was in charge of such issues. He wrote to the chamber as well but received no answer and ultimately opted to hire a lawyer.
A mediation with the dentist was launched. It took a year before she wrote him an email, saying that she was aware that her treatment was demeaning and discriminatory.
The patient, who felt that the apology was not sincere, decided to take the dentist to court after her malpractice insurance company rejected his complaint.
She was found guilty at the first instance in April 2018. She appealed but the Higher Court upheld the first instance ruling in July 2018 and she ultimately paid the EUR 2,700 fine.
In response to the newspaper report about the case on Monday, the Medical Chamber said it was unacceptable to turn away a patient infected with a contagious disease.
"It needs to be taken into consideration, however, that such a case may affect organisation of work in the sense of rescheduling the appointment of the patient or other patients to ensure safe treatment of everyone present.
"All health staff has a duty to act in a way so as not to expose other patients to the risk of infection," the chamber said in a release.
The chamber said that it had received queries about the case from the patents' rights ombudsman in the previous term. In this term oversight was conducted with the dentist but "no departure from expert doctrine or work in comparable doctor's offices was established".
February 20, 2019
Ljubljana Pride Parade will happen on June 22 this year, and preparations for the event have already started.
To make sure everything works as it should, Pride is calling for Slovenian and foreign volunteers, preferably LGBTIQ+ people aged between 18 and 30 who are interested in LGBTIQ+ organisations, topics and politics. Legal EU residence is a must.
In return for help with organisation of the event, volunteers will get accommodation and food expenses covered, some pocket money, and other benefits. There are only 15 vacancies to be filled, so hurry and secure your place in Ljubljana this summer.
Find more details here and here.
STA, 14 December 2018 - The Council of Europe and UNESCO are urging against violence towards lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender individuals at schools in their latest report, which shows that in Slovenia 43% of young people were subject to this type of violence in 2014.
This can be psychological, physical or sexual violence that happens on school grounds and also on-line. Its most frequent forms are verbal violence and harassment, the CoE says in the report.
Such violence targeting members of the LGBTI community was detected in all CoE countries, most notably in Turkey (67%) and Belgium (47%).
In the section on the situation in Slovenia, the report refers to a 2013 research carried out by the EU's Fundamental Rights Agency.
The survey showed that 59% of the 636 lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons "always" or "frequently" heard negative remarks about their classmates' sexual orientation or sexual identity and 30% of them are "always" or "frequently" the targets of such remarks themselves.
All our stories tagged LGBT can be found here
The report also refers to the 2014 survey in which 42.8% of respondents aged between 15 and 30 years reported of at least one experience of a homophobic attack during their education.
Slovenia is among the 32 CoE members that have explicitly banned discrimination based on sexual orientation at schools and is one of the 24 CoE countries that have explicitly banned discrimination based on sexual identity in education.
In 2016, the Slovenian anti-discrimination legislation expanded the list of the types of discrimination banned to discrimination based on sexual identity, while discrimination based on sexual orientation is banned by the Constitution.
The report released on Thursday is based on responses of public sector employees from 35 CoE member states.
The full report, in PDF form, can be read here
The Festival of LGBT Film has come a long since the days when the organisers were building an underground event around a collection of VHS tapes hand collected from London, often screened without anyone involved knowing quite what they contained. Now getting ready to start it’s 34th edition, the festival is a well-established annual affair, put on with the support of public and private sponsors, and with a large, well-curated programme of features and shorts from around the world. Over twenty titles will be shown in Ljubljana, at Kinodvor, Kinoteka and Metelkova’s Klub Tiffany, with additional screenings in Maribor (IntimiKino), Koper (MKSMC), Ptuj (Mestin kino), Bistrica ob Sotli (Mladinski center), Idrija (Filmsko gledališče) and Trst/Trieste (Cinema Ariston).
The films come from Slovenia, the USA, China, Germany, Italy, Myanmar, Columbia, South Korea, Switzerland, Turkey, Spain, France, Paraguay, Brazil, Scotland, Kenya and elsewhere, with all screenings including both English and Slovene subtitles, when needed. The related website also has an English version, here, which includes the full schedule of screenings and events, and there’s also a Facebook page.
The festival presents a round-up of the last year or so in LGBT+ film from around the world, with both fictional and documentary presentations, including Chi salverà le rose? (Who Will Save the Roses?), Sydney and Friends, Mr Gay Syria, Call Her Ganda, Freak Show, The Miseducation of Cameron Post, Rafiki, Carmen & Lola, Martesa (The Marriage Film), Consequences (Posledice), Obscuro Barroco, Queercore and The Handmaiden (Agassi), although note this list is incomplete and a fuller account can be found elsewhere online.
All our LGBT+ stories can be found here
The Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana, and ŠKUC are co-hosting an international conference on LGBTQ+ literature in Eastern Europe on 25 and 26 October 2018, which will examine, among other issues, the following questions:
First, a note on terminology. I recently went on Alternative Ljubljana’s first English-language LGBT tour, and when going back into the early years of the more open scene, back in the 1980s, the term used was LG, which later became LGBT. More recently this was extended to LGBTQ, LGBTQI, LGBTQI+ and so on, with more missing letters to be added, just like the rainbow flag has evolved to show different parts of the spectrum. However, as a personal preference I’m averse to long acronyms that have to be spelled out, and four letters, like BYOB or MDMA, seem about right, with a nice, percussive rhythm. So for the purposes of this article we’ll be using LGBT, and I’ll also be using the terms gay and lesbian rather freely, with the former being a catch-all term for all the colours of the rainbow.