The International Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean Women’s Day was established on July 25, 1992, in a meeting in the Dominican Republic, and will be celebrated throughout Brazil.
Starting from yesterday (July 24), the Secretaria de Políticas de Promoção da Igualdade Racial (Secretariat for the Promotion of Racial Equality or SEPPIR) will participate in a series of events to celebrate Afro-Latin American and Caribbean Women’s Day. During the activities, strategies will be discussed to strengthen the work of organizations promoting racial and gender equality in Brazil.
On July 23rd, in Brasilia, there was the V Latinidades – Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean Women’s Festival. For seven days there will be concerts, workshops and debates to give visibility to the history of struggle and resistance of black women in Latin America.
Yesterday, Mônica Oliveira, program director at the SEPPIR, was scheduled to take part in a roundtable discussing the health of the black woman. According to the director, currently 60% of victims of maternal death are black: “During pregnancy, black women are less likely to undergo prenatal visits, or by difficulties of access, lack of information or even discrimination in services”, she explains.
Also Latinidades will feature the project manager of SEPPIR, Eunice Léa de Moraes, in the debate on employment and income. The report Perfil do Trabalho Decente (Profile of Decent Work) released last Thursday (19) by the International Labour Organization (ILO) found that young black women have less access to school and work. In the age group between 15 and 24, one in four young black Brazilians did not study or didn’t work, this number corresponds to 25.3% of this population group.
This year the event honors the philosopher and activist Sueli Carneiro, the founder of Geledés – Black Women’s Institute. The theme of the Fifth edition of the festival is Juventude Negra (Black Youth), which directs seminars and debates involving black professionals in Latin America and the Caribbean and also Africa. The program includes the African Business fair, in which black entrepreneurs exhibit their products and services to the public. The closure will have artistic performances and fashion show based on the garments of religions of African origin.
The choice of the Juventude Negra theme comes from the need to discuss the challenges faced by this vulnerable portion of society that, unfortunately, is the main victim of urban violence and has been a favorite target of the murderers and police excesses. In Brazil, black youth tops the rankings of those living in families considered poor and receive lower wages than the market. They also lead the list of unemployed, illiterate, and those who drop out of school and have higher performance discrepancy at school.
This year the big news of the event is a partnership with the Cena Contemporânea – Festival Internacional de Teatro de Brasília (1) (Contemporary Scene – International Festival of Theatre of Brasília) which together will hold a week of great shows at the National Museum of Brasilia, from July 23-29. In the Cena Contemporânea, another partner is the Feira Preta (Black Fair) (2) of São Paulo, taking place on the 28th and 29thof July.
The group Melanina Carioca performs at the event Da cor, da Raça, Nação Mulher (Of Color, of Race, Nation Woman) at the 2011 International Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean Women’s Day in Rio
Other States in Brazil
The health of black women will also be the subject of a lecture given by the Municipality of the city of Itajaí in (the state of ) Santa Catarina (3), to be held on Friday (27). “Our task as SEPPIR is to bring information and training for these activities and is strategic because, informed, they articulate better to help us change these data”, explained Mônica Oliveira.
On the 26th, the discussion will be on the scenario of the Policy for the Promotion of Racial Equality for Women with a focus on residents in traditional communities, in the 1st State Women’s Seminar of Traditional Communities, that will be held by the Department of Social Welfare and Human Rights of (the state of) Espírito Santo (4).
The Secretary of Affirmative Action Policies of SEPPIR, Ângela Nascimento, will participate in the workshop: Challenges of Intersectionality of the Agendas of Cairo and Durban in Brazil: Cairo + 20 (1994) and Decade of the African Descendant of the United Nations (2012-2022) that will be held July 27-29 in Curitiba.
1. Brasília is Brazil’s capital city
2. Feira Preta is the biggest black cultural event in Latin America. Taking place in São Paulo, it brings together black authors, black clothing items, black books, black dolls, black art, black film and black musicians, etc. every year, usually in November or December. It is similar to many the numerous Black Expo type events in the US. Feria Preta celebrated its 10th year in December of last year. See video.
3. Santa Catarina is a state in southern Brazil with one of the highest standards of living in Latin America.
4. Espírito Santo is a state located in southeastern Brazil south of the state of Bahia and north of the state of Rio de Janeiro. Its name literally means “Holy Spirit”.