Committee on the Elimination of
Discrimination against Women
Fift y-first session
13 February – 2 March 2012
List of issues and questions with regard to the consideration of periodic reports
The pre-session working group considered the seventh periodic report of Brazil (CEDAW/C/BRA/7).
1.The annex of the report contains limited statistical data disaggregated by sex on the situation of women in all areas covered by the Convention. Please provide information on the status of data collection and analysis in the country in general, and indicate to what extent data collection takes place on a disaggregated basis to illuminate the situation of women, based on factors such as their age, socio-economic status, urban/rural location, race, ethnicity and religion. Please describe how the Government intends to improve the collection of disaggregated data pertaining to the areas of the Convention.
Constitutional and legislative framework
2.Please provide information on strategies used to disseminate the Convention and its Optional Protocol among the general public and provide legal literacy programmes and assistance to women, especially in remote areas, as well as measures taken to ensure that the provisions of the Convention are applied in a consistent manner at all levels of the Federal Republic as recommended by the Committee in paragraphs 16 and 14 of its previous concluding observations (CEDAW/C/BRA/CO/6).
3.During the reporting period several laws have been passed and/or amended but there is a concern that there are gaps in the legislation regarding emerging issues affecting women, such as genetic developments, technological advances and sexual-orientation issues and while the judiciary is sensitive to the social emergence of new values, it reproduces social stereotypes with a predominately patriarchal attribution of social roles. Please indicate if in the process of legal reform these concerns are under active consideration and what measures are contemplated to address them.
National gender machinery
4.The report indicates in paragraphs 1 and 2 changes on the status and structure of the institution in charge of developing policies related to women, now called Secretariat of Policies for Women (SPM). Please provide information on how these changes have impacted the capacity of the SPM to execute its mandate at federal, state and municipality levels, including the adequacy of its human and financial resources to support the mandate at all levels, as recommended by the Committee in its previous concluding observations (CEDAW/C/BRA/CO/6, para. 18). Please clarify what type of coordination exists among the gender mechanisms at different levels in the country and whether there is an entity with full capacity and authority to coordinate their actions.
5.According to paragraph 170 of the report, a review and an assessment of the First National Plan of Policies for Women (I PNPM) was carried out during the Second National Conference on Women, in August 2007. Please provide further information on the results of this assessment and its impact on the elaboration of the Second National Plan of Policies for Women (II PNPM), approved in 2008 and indicate ways in which the axes of this Plan address obligations under the Convention. Please also provide information on whether the Coordination and Monitoring Committee of the PNPM has been established and also on its mandate and composition (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 14).
6.Please provide information on the mandate of the female caucus of the National Congress, mentioned in paragraphs 10 and 11 of the report and achievements made through this mechanism in the advancement of women’s rights in the State party.
7.Please clarify whether the structure in place to coordinate the implementation of the National Pact to Combat Violence against Women at the federal, state and municipal levels (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, paras. 63 to 68) is also replicated to the implementation of other national plans and policies aimed to advance women’s rights, for example to the Integrated Plan to Combat the Feminization of the Epidemic of AIDS and other STDs (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 86) and the National Policy to Combat Human Trafficking (ibid., para. 95).
Temporary special measures
8.Please provide information on the implementation of temporary special measures aimed at accelerating substantive equality between men and women, particularly in respect to rural women, women of African descent and indigenous women. Please also indicate to what extent the State party has promoted the adoption of temporary special measures in line with the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25 (2004).
Violence against women
9.According to paragraphs 12 and 35 of the report, the Maria da Penha Law of 6 August 2006 provides for the creation of Special Courts for Domestic Violence and Family Violence against Women. It is also mentioned, in paragraph 74, that 147 specialized courts have been established throughout the country. Please provide detailed information on complaints lodged by women before these Special Courts, the type of violence they were victims of, prosecutions and sentences imposed on perpetrators. Please provide information on whether the Observatory for Monitoring the Implementation and Enforcement of the Maria da Penha law has been established (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 42) and, if so, what the findings to date have been.
10.According to table 1.2 of the report (see annex) there has been a considerable increase in the number of reports on violence against women received by the Women’s Call Centre (number 180) between 2006 and 2009, from 12,664 to 40,857. Please provide information on the type of violence reported and the type of assistance provided to the victims. Please also provide information on the criteria established to recruit the staff who service the call centre and the type of training on violence against women they receive, besides sensitization related to women victims of trafficking (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 122 (d)).
Trafficking and exploitation of prostitution
11.Please provide detailed information on the achievements of the Working Group on human trafficking and related crimes legislation, mentioned in paragraph 120 of the report, including on the status of the proposed amendments to the national legislation and on steps taken to establish the National System for Prevention and Combat of Human Trafficking. Please also clarify whether the State party is considering adopting a comprehensive anti-trafficking legislation, as recommended by the Committee in its previous concluding observations (CEDAW/C/BRA/CO/6, para. 24) as well as strategies for dismantling trafficking networks and filing complaints.
Political participation and decision making
12.Please provide information on measures taken to overcome the persistence of patriarchal attitudes which impede women’s participation in political and public life referred to in paragraphs 141 and 164 of the report. Please also provide updated information on the status of the bill which includes a proposal to reform the political and electoral system of the State party to increase women’s political participation, mentioned in paragraph 159 of the report. Please also explain what has been the role of the National Forum of women of Political Parties in the discussions aimed at increasing women’s participation in the politics, led by the Tripartite Committee (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 155). What results have been achieved from implementation of the Second National Women’s Policies Plan which included actions specifically directed to women’s political participation and representation (ibid., para. 170).
13.Please provide information on measures taken to address the illiteracy rate of women in the State party in particular in the South and Southeast regions (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 190). Please also provide information on steps taken to encourage women to enrol in higher education in non-traditional fields of study (ibid., para. 223).
14.Please provide updated information on the status of the draft Employment Equality Act, mentioned in paragraph 249 of the report and on measures in place to reduce the wage gap between men and women. Please provide information on the achievements of the measures in place which seek to protect domestic workers, mentioned in paragraphs 253 and 254 of the report and also provide information on specific measures taken to address the discrimination in employment and social security benefits faced by women of African descent engaged in domestic work (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 231). Please inform the Committee on steps taken to address the situation of girls as young as 10 years performing domestic work in the State party (ibid., para. 226).
15.Please inform the Committee on specific measures in place to address the issue of unsafe abortions in the State party (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 266) and discrimination against women and adolescents who come to health centres with initiated abortions or are victims of violence because of conservative cultural patterns. Please also provide updated information on the Complaint of Breach of Fundamental Precept No. 54, on the decriminalization of abortion in cases of fetal malformations (ibid., para. 268).
16.Please provide information on specific measures taken to combat the persistent growth in female HIV/AIDS infection, in particular among adolescents and married adult women in the State party (CEDAW/C/BRA/7, para. 285).
17.Please provide information on what measures are contemplated to address cases of forced sterilisation of women mainly among poor and women of African descent.
Disadvantaged groups of women
18.Please provide more information and data disaggregated by sex, on measures aimed at the improvement of rural women’s access to land and ownership mentioned in paragraph 323 of the report. Please also describe other concrete actions taken and achievements made to guarantee rural women access to credit facilities and extension of services to improve their social and economic conditions. Please also provide further information on the number of women who have benefited from the Support Women’s credit mentioned in paragraph 332 of the report.
19.The report refers in paragraphs 299 to 315 to health-care initiatives which target different groups of disadvantaged women, including indigenous and women of African descent, women with disabilities, older women and lesbian, bisexual and transgender women. Please provide information on any other measures in place aiming at eliminating the discrimination against these groups of women. Please also provide further information on the National Plan for the Promotion of LGBT Citizenship and Human Rights referred to in paragraph 107 (c) of the report.
Marriage and family relations
20.The report is silent regarding to measures in place to eliminate discrimination against women in all matters relating to marriage and family relations. Please provide information on steps taken by the State party to protect the rights of women in relation to obligations under article 16 of the Convention.