CoE urges Slovenia to address all types of violence against women

Ljubljana – The government has received a report by the Council of Europe’s group of experts on Slovenia’s implementation of the Istanbul Convention. The group believes that the measures taken in Slovenia do not cover all types of violence as defined in the convention. Slovenia needs to respond to all forms of violence in a holistic way, the experts said.

After receiving the report on Wednesday, the government has responded by saying it had tasked relevant ministries and government departments to implement the adopted recommendations in line with their competences.

The report by the Group of Experts on Action against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence highlights the country’s progress as well, noting that certain additional types of violences, such as stalking and forced marriage, have been criminalised in Slovenia. Moreover, the definitions of rape and sexual violence have been upgraded.

However, there is less political focus and funding for other forms of violence against women covered by the convention. These include psychological violence and sexual harassment outside the workplace, the experts said.

Numerous interventions by law enforcement and social services are not carried out in full recognition of gender-based abuse in relationships, the report goes on to say.

These interventions should also take into account socio-economic discrimination and the unequal position of women in society. The interventions also fail to acknowledge negative gender stereotypes and sexist practices that affect women and put them at a disadvantage in their daily lives.

The group hence believes that efforts should be stepped up to ensure that legislative, training and awareness-raising measures address the different forms of violence against women as a gender-related phenomenon.

Training on all types of violence against women should be made mandatory for all professionals involved in preventing and tackling these issues, the report says. In the absence of this, there are ongoing problems when it comes to responding appropriately.

The experts also point out that Slovenia’s criminal justice system should be more responsive to all types of violence against women as well.