The Problem of Domestic Abuse and Femicide in Brazil

Amira Rupnick, “The Problem of Domestic Abuse and Femicide in Brazil”
Mentor: Natasha Borges Sugiyama, Political Science

Domestic violence and homicide against women in Brazil is a longstanding problem which has risen to national attention in recent decades. Through my research, I wanted to analyze and discover the answers to my main questions: How big of a problem is domestic violence and femicide in Brazil? What has been done to address domestic violence in Brazil? And third, is there progress being made? To find these answers, I identified and analyzed original data and statistics that are provided by the Brazilian government. I also analyzed government reports and scholarly research on the topic. My main findings are: First, that location matters. Rates of femicide in Brazil tend to be higher in the Northern states of Brazil, Afro-Brazilian women are the main victims of domestic violence and femicide in Brazil and it is continuously rising, whereas the rates for white Brazilian women are actually decreasing. Second, with regard to policy, public outcry over the repeated attempted murder and assaults incurred by Maria da Penha and the subsequent impunity towards her husband, led the government to finally address and enact legal reforms. The Maria da Penha Law was implemented in 2006, in attempt to decrease the domestic violence rates in Brazil, by increasing the punishment for the domestic abuse offenders. The Maria da Penha Law also led to the requirement of Brazilian authorities to institute 24 hour shelters for victims. In conclusion, there needs to be more done to solve this problem. There is information that is difficult to obtain, such as updated murder rates and the specific data of murders involving women. There needs to be much more data available to the public, more data recorded and overall there needs to be more information on this extremely important topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.