After several months of government's funding suspension, the Slovenian Press Agency, colleagues from the Slovenian Journalists' Association launched the #zaobSTAnek (#zaopSTAnak) campaign to raise money to preserve professional and independent journalism, as well as to save hundreds of jobs.
The goal of the campaign is to raise two million euros through small donations via SMS or larger, direct payments, in which supporters of the agency outside Slovenia can also participate.
We support collegiality and solidarity, especially in a crisis situation, but at the same time we express concern about the situation in which the public media depends on the collection of donations and the goodwill of citizens whose right to information should be guaranteed.
The Slovenian Press Agency was established in 1991 and the Republic of Slovenia, as its owner, is required by law to pay funds for the provision of public services. The Slovenian Government Communication Office (UKOM) requested certain documentation from the agency last year, thus exceeding its authority. After months of suspension of funding and statements by government officials calling the STA to release the documents, the agency forwarded them to the government as the agency's sole shareholder, specifically to Prime Minister Janez Jansa's office. Funding, however, has not yet resumed.
Every day of the year, the STA - which Prime Minister Jansa called a "national disgrace" - produces news in Slovenian and English, photos, audio content, live broadcasts and many other content. Most other media also depend on the work of its journalists, which became especially important during the coronavirus pandemic, when the movement and gathering of citizens is limited.
HND and SNH also join international journalists' associations that have been warning for more than a year about the threat to media freedoms in Slovenia, under the leadership of Prime Minister Janša.
Hrvoje Zovko, President of the Croatian Journalists' Association,
Maja Sever, President of the Trade Union of Croatian Journalists