By Nelson Belen, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – According to a new survey from the Brazilian Public Security Forum, more than sixteen million women, comprising some 27 percent of the Brazilian population, have suffered some type of physical violence during the past year. This amounts to some five hundred women subjected to violence per hour across the country.
An accompanying survey from Datafolha showed that among the female victims of violence in Brazil, more than half (52 percent) stated that they did not seek help after the violent incidents occurred.
Some twenty percent revealed they contacted local law enforcement; fifteen percent said they talked about it with family; and eight percent sought help from the church.
In the majority of cases (76 percent), the violence against a woman was committed by someone the victim knew, such as a spouse or boyfriend (24 percent), an ex-spouse or boyfriend (fifteen percent), parents (seven percent), friends (six percent), and siblings (five percent).
The survey also examined harassment and showed that the most vulnerable group of women are aged between sixteen and 24. 66 percent of women in this age group have fallen victim to some form of harassment.
For Brazilian women aged 25 to 34, 54 percent reporting having suffered some form of harassment. For those 35 to 44, 33 percent reported being harrassed.
Most of the harassment, according to the survey, takes the form of sneers or disrespectful comments while walking down the street (32 percent), disrespectful comments at the workplace (eleven percent) and harassment while on public transportation (seven percent).
Last month, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), reported that in only the first few weeks of 2019, 126 gender-based murders of women along with 67 murder attempts had already occurred in Brazil for an average of four women killed every day.
In a meeting at the United Nations in New York on Monday (February 25th) Brazil’s Minister of Women, Family, and Human Rights, Damares Alves, asserted that the implementation of politics for the protection and defense of human rights is among the Brazilian government’s top priorities.
“We will spare no efforts in addressing discrimination and violence against women, especially femicide and sexual harassment.”