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Slovenia Weekly

Time for consensus

12.12.2014

Editorial

New agreement should take into account the interests of the young. Photo: Mostphotos
In accordance with this year’s slogan of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, 'Human Rights 365', 10 December – Human Rights Day – should not be very different from any other day. Yet it is a fact that, after all these decades since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted, we must still draw attention to respect for basic human rights. Particularly at a time of economic crisis, an individual’s right to personal dignity is often violated in the name of survival and austerity in many parts of the world. Unfortunately, Slovenia is no exception.

Therefore, it is all the more important that at events across Slovenia honouring 10 December some notable speakers focused mainly on the young. According to the President of the National Assembly, Dr Milan Brglez, they are the greatest victims of the economic crisis that has gripped the majority of European countries due to high unemployment and the lack of prospects.

While today’s decision of the Slovenian government denying support to voluntary internship in the public sector and preventing ministries and government offices from concluding such agreements may seem marginal, it is really the first step towards restoring personal dignity to the young, who after their many years of education we increasingly often force to gain their first work experience without pay.

Structural reforms, austerity measures and ambitious investment projects prepared by the government to achieve financial consolidation are essential if Slovenia is to regain the path of economic growth and development. As the Prime Minister Miro Cerar said at the meeting with the President of Slovenia, the President of the National Assembly and the President of the National Council, wide social consensus and cooperation must be reached for their implementation. Such consensus is possible only if the planned changes are tailored to the person, not to the interests of the capital. A new opportunity to find a common vision of Slovenia’s development emerges today, when representatives of the government, the unions and the industry will try again to conclude a social agreement for 2015-2016.

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