The head of Brazil’s Special Secretariat for Women Policies, Minister Nilcéa Freire, says that the problem of violence against women is so complex that it can only be dealt with through partnership efforts by government at all levels (federal, state and local), the executive, judicial and legislative branches of government and society – all together.
Freire said that when she took over the secretariat there were 48 centers in Brazil providing assistance to women who were victims of violence and that today that number has more than doubled to 114.
The centers are located in urban areas, providing psychological, social and juridical aid with support from governmental and non-governmental organizations.
In the case of a woman who has been the victim of violence, she first goes to a special police station (delegacia da mulher) to register her complaint. The centers provide posterior, ongoing, continuous assistance.
"It is because of things like these centers that women in Brazil can celebrate March 8 – International Women’s Day," said the Minister.
Freire did not cite numbers on violence against women, but she said that in the metropolitan region of Recife, the capital of Pernambuco state, in the Brazilian Northeast, just in the month of January, 44 women were killed in their own homes by husbands, ex-husbands, boyfriends or ex-boyfriends.