Brazil Analysis

Less chance to access in parliament and ministerial positions

Women holding only 9% of parliamentary positions and only 7% of ministerial level positions, Brazil ranks very low on these indicators (108th and 102nd, respectively). It implied that women still have significant lag in political participation nad less opportunities to influence the policy decision-making.
However,a worth-to-mention point is the first women president has been elected after the report printed out. In October 2010, it is the end of Lula's tenure and Rousseff to be the next president of Brazil. She defeated José Serra 56% to 44% to become the country's first woman president. Because of term limits, Lula could not run for a third consecutive term. Rousseff is expected to follow through with Lula's agenda, but faces the task of improving the country's education, health, and sanitation systems. The vote was seen as an endorsement of Lula and his social and economic policies.
It is no doubt that a women president will think more about the right of women and put more effort on helping women. Rousseff promised to make gender equality and solve poverty as the first priority with a slogan “Yes, a women can.” She has launched a program called “Brazil Without Misery” which aimed to reduce the number of absolute poverty.

Discrimination on workplace

Brazil's women suffer from a longstanding tradition of inequality and discrimination in the labor market. According to the Women's Health Journal, among university-educated workers, there tends to be a higher value placed on men, with the exception of jobs considered "women's work," such as childcare, grade school teachers and nursing. The two videos below are from the World Bank. The first video is a woman farmer explains that men do not treat women as equals even though they do the same tasks. The second video is Rosalba Ciarlini, the Brazilian Governor, says women are still screaming to be heard and we can change this through education and teaching our children that boys and girls are equal.

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Actually, a Brazilian NGO started to do a campaign to solve this problem. Promundo, a Brazilian NGO based in Rio de Janeiro, developed and implemented a campaign called Entre Nós (“Between Us”). It is an innovative multi-media campaign to engage Brazilian youth in critical reflections on rigid ideas about gender and how they influence their lives and relationships.

Declining fertility rate

Fertility rate also is an important factor that leads to the low labor force participation of women. If the fertility rate of women decreased, it is no doubt that less young women would participate into the labor force.
Compared with the past, the fertility rate of Brazil in recent year is decreasing. According to the Jacqueline Pitanguy, leading women's rights advocate, she pointed out that the fertility rate in the '60s is six children per woman but we have now 1.9 in Brazil. She also said that 80 percent of Brazilian women of childbearing age are using some form of artificial contraception. It is one of the reasons that there is still a gender gap in labor force participation.

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