Pandemic, State, and the Rule of Law


December 9 @ 16:0018:00

A brief description of the event:

The Slovenian authorities responded to the outbreak of pandemic COVID-19, inter alia, with measures and restrictions on fundamental rights similar to those in most other European countries. The COVID-19 crisis, led the government to declare a public health emergency in March 2020. This was withdrawn in the summer of 2020, reintroduced in the autumn of 2020 and then withdrawn again in the spring of 2021.


Disruptions to daily interaction, education, and work; restrictions on freedom of movement from, into, and within the country; prohibitions on gathering in public places; the mandatory use of face masks in enclosed public spaces and public transport; and other restrictions and prohibitions similar to those in other European countries were introduced and sanctions imposed for their violations.


The legality and constitutionality of the measures imposing restrictions on fundamental rights have been constantly challenged in the courts. Simultaneously, some legal experts have warned that Slovenia has been witnessing disproportionate and harmful restrictions on fundamental rights and the erosion of law with devastating consequences for the entire legal system.


As in many other countries, protests against the measures and the current government gradually became permanent, highlighted the depth of the crisis of authority, and revealed the COVID-19 emergency as a moment of political suspension and heightened social confrontation. At the Public Tribune, the pandemic, efforts to contain it, and the current situation in the country and society will be addressed in public health, philosophical, constitutional, and public safety perspectives by five professors of the University of Maribor:


Prof. Dr. Ivan Eržen, University of Maribor, Faculty of Health Sciences

Prof. Dr Branko Lobnikar, University of Maribor, Faculty of Criminal Justice and Security

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Friderik Klampfer, University of Maribor, Faculty of Arts

Assoc. prof. Dr. Benjamin Flander, University of Maribor, Faculty of Criminal Justice and Security Assist. Prof. Dr. Miroslav Žaberl, University of Maribor, Faculty of Criminal Justice and Security


The Public Tribune will be moderated by Assist. Prof. Dr. Maja Modic from the Faculty of Criminal Justice and Security, University of Maribor.


The event is organised by the Legal Department and Department of Policing and Security Studies of the Faculty of Criminal Justice and Security of the University of Maribor. The Public Tribune will take place as a dissemination event within the international research project on the interpretation of fundamental rights in Europe, coordinated by the Ferenc Mádl Institute of Comparative Law. The event is an initiative of Professor Benjamin Flander, member of the Central European Professors’ Network


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