Yesterday afternoon, I had the opportunity to visit with two veterinarians who trained at our clinic in 2008. We talked about a wide range of subjects.
One of the interesting points that we talked about was maternity leave. They were astonished that maternity leave in the US was only 6 weeks. In Slovenia, women have 1 year maternity leave. 3 months at full pay and then 9 months at 80% pay.
We also talked about the state of agriculture. They told me that there were 400,000 cows in Slovenia. As a comparison NY state has around 900,000. Most of their milk is being exported to other Balkan states and the Middle East. As in the US, the small farms in Slovenia are going out of business and being absorbed into larger farms. One of the concerns of vets in Slovenia is protecting their professional turf. Slowly their traditional role is being encroached upon. Currently they do a lot of jobs that technicians do in the US. Obviously Slovenian farmers would like to hire technicians or do some of this work themselves to save on expenses.
We also talked about the refugee crisis in the Middle East. They said that 1.5 million refugees traveled through Slovenia last year on their way to Germany and northern Europe. They worry about the impact of refugees on a country of only 2 million people.