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Case Law

Vrhovno sodisce Republike Slovenije [Supreme Court of the Republic of Slovenia]
Legal provision Directive 2000/43/EC
Area Employment & training
Form of Discrimination Direct discrimination
Grounds of discrimination Discrimination on ground of racial or ethnic origin
Topic Discrimination by private parties
Discrimination on ground of racial or ethnic origin , legal finding, court decision , Slovenia , Recruitment .
Key facts of the case:

The defendant (a secondary music school) published a job advertisement four times. The plaintiff of Macedonian ethnic origin was not called for an interview or offered a job although he applied for the job every time and fulfilled all required conditions. An other person of Slovenian origin was chosen despite the fact that she did not fulfil the requested conditions.

Main reasoning/argumentation:

The Supreme Court reasoned that the sole fact that someone else was accepted for the job did not prove discrimination. According to the court, the fact that the secretary had asked the plaintiff which academy he graduated from did not prove discrimination on the grounds of ethnicity. The defendant exculpated itself by stating it decided not to employ the plaintiff because it was questionable how he would be able to perform his duties in the school along with many other extra-school activities he was involved with. The defendant violated other rules by permanently employing a person who did not fulfil all conditions, but not the anti-discrimination rules (i.e. Article 6 of the Employment Relationships Act).

Key issues (concepts, interpretations) clarified by the case:

According to the court the defendant proved that it was not the plaintiff's ethnic origin which had influenced the decision not to employ the plaintiff, but rather his ability to perform all requested duties along with his other extra-school activities. According to the court, both the ethnic origin and the extra-school activities of the candidate constitute his 'personal circumstances'. While the ethnic origin cannot be a justified reason for rejecting a candidate, the extra-school activitieds of the candidate can be legitimately considered if they can influence the work in the announced position.

Results and most important consequences, implications of the case:

The case is important because it is the first ethnic-discrimination related case adjudicated by the Slovenian labour courts, including the Supreme Court, in the field of employment. The case was adjudicated only recently (07.11.2006 ) and therefore any implications of the case are yet to be observed. Neither has the case been referred to in any legal literature.