04.09.2018

Although deeply involved in the construction of public policies, women in the social movements maintained their autonomy and the demand for a deepening and ongoing upgrading of these policies.


So all is going well?

Not really. The impeachment of President Dilma Roussef in April 2016 meant a profound shift in direction for policies in favour of family and peasant agriculture. The Ministry of Agrarian Development was closed, and its activities are now co-ordinated, with a very small budget, by institutions with less political power. Policies and programmes to strengthen women farmers have been practically cancelled, the Executive Board has been dismantled, and the advisory group created to replace it does not have its own budget or an adequate number of civil servants for implementation and follow-up. Historical achievements of the rural women's movement, such as the special-insured status in the social security system, are under strong threat in the pension reform proposals with a neoliberal bias put forward by the federal government.

If you had three wishes, what would you ask from women, men and government?
I would ask women to go on being self-confident and placing hope in their organisations so that the small and large changes they have already accomplished can still carry on working in a very adverse context. I would ask men to trust that real equality between women and men, although it may imply loss of privileges (meaning the hours not dedicated to housework and care), will enable them to become better people and strengthen the movement advocating for their territories and ways of life. I would ask government to respect women as women farmers, to acknowledge their economic, social and political contribution, to not threaten the rights that have already been conquered, to resume the policies of income and power distribution and to not be an accomplice to those who take away the life and hope of better days.

Land-use in Brazil and Ribeira Valley

Brazil is marked by a large concentration of land.