U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - Slovenia
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||3 June 2005|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - Slovenia, 3 June 2005, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4680d86423.html [accessed 28 May 2016]|
Slovenia (Tier 2)
Slovenia is a transit and, to a lesser extent, a source and destination country for women and girls trafficked to or through Slovenia mainly from eastern and southeastern Europe (Ukraine, Slovakia, Romania, Moldova, and Bulgaria) for the purpose of sexual exploitation. A small number of persons are trafficked from Slovenia to Western Europe, particularly Italy and the Netherlands.
The Government of Slovenia does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking in persons; however, it is making significant efforts to do so. While the government adopted a detailed National Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings, it has struggled to implement it due to budgetary pressures. Slovenian Government efforts to address trafficking have improved during the reporting period, but consistent budget support remains in flux. The government should continue to implement the National Action Plan and focus enforcement efforts on convicting traffickers under its new anti-trafficking legislation. Slovenian authorities should also continue to increase scrutiny of work permits and club licenses and conduct unannounced inspections of worksites where trafficking victims are believed present.
Slovenia's law enforcement efforts to prosecute traffickers during the last year appeared modest. The new anti-trafficking legislation that came into effect in May 2004 allows police to use methods of investigation, such as surveillance, due to the seriousness of the crime. Arresting officers had not been fully aware of the new law, but the Ministry of Interior has begun working with police to educate officers about the legislation. Slovenia's Penal Code specifically criminalizes trafficking for sexual exploitation and forced labor with sufficiently severe penalties. Slovenian authorities reported nine trafficking-related investigations, one ongoing prosecution, and no convictions during the reporting period. The low number of cases reflects a relatively modest trafficking problem and law enforcement's adjustment to the new legislation. In January 2005, prosecutors received a three-day training session on trafficking. Slovenia actively participated in the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe, the Southeastern European Cooperative Initiative (SECI), and Interpol efforts in fighting against trafficking in persons.
Slovenia improved its assistance to trafficking victims in 2004. Government funding sustained Slovenia's one shelter, run by an NGO. While the government planned to underwrite the shelter's operating costs in out years, budgetary constraints and a change of government have delayed future commitments. During 2004, the government-funded NGO assisted 25 trafficking victims, nine of whom received assistance at the shelter. Police referred trafficking victims rescued during raids or investigations to the shelter. Law enforcement did not treat victims as criminals, and the government provided victims protection from prosecution, temporary residency status, and social services. During the reporting period, Slovenia began a project to formalize mechanisms to provide information to those asylum-seekers in reception centers most at risk to falling prey to human traffickers. The project is jointly administered by the Ministry of Interior, local NGOs, and UNHCR; the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is working to expand and regionalize the project. During the reporting period, police drafted a law on witness protection, which is currently with the Ministry of Justice.
The Government of Slovenia's prevention efforts improved over the last year. The interdepartmental working group to combat trafficking continued to meet on a regular basis and adopted a detailed National Action Plan in July 2004. Government officials and activists collaborated in the working group on anti-trafficking policies and programs. The government issues a publicly available report detailing its anti-trafficking efforts annually. During the reporting period, the Ministry of Labor and the Slovenian Institute for Employment agreed on stricter criteria for issuing work permits to dancers and waitresses. The government funded the Slovenian translation of a comprehensive survey on trafficking in the country. The government partially funded preventative workshops by a local NGO in raising trafficking awareness in elementary and secondary schools. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs sponsored a project "Are we aware?" for Slovene politicians and government employees, a part of which included viewing the anti-trafficking film "Lilya 4-Ever".