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Women In Brazil Don’t Care If Tech Isn’t A Woman’s Space, They’re Breaking In

Although they know this change won’t happen over night, women in Brazil are starting to turn the tide in the male to female ratio of tech entrepreneurs and graduates. According to a report from Americas Quarterly, only 13 percent of the tech startups in São Paulo are founded by women even though the market for tech startups has grown by 20 percent over the last two years.For reference, the global average of women-led startups is 18 percent meaning São Paulo is behind the curve. In total, investors have flushed the tech sector in Brazil with 4.5 billion Brazilian reales (about $1.5 billion USD) just last year. So, what gives? Well, according to Iana Chan, who spoke to Americas Quarterly, it all goes back to gender stereotypes.

So, what gives? Well, according to Iana Chan, who spoke to Americas Quarterly, it all goes back to gender stereotypes.

“These are cultural narratives that go back to childhood,” Chan told Americas Quarterly about her own upbringing with her brother. “Girls play at home with dolls, and boys play with video games. There were boy things and girl things, and I could play when he [her brother] wasn’t using them.”

But, the demand and interest are there, according to Americas Quarterly. PrograMaria is an incubator program for women who want to break into the Brazilian tech world and wants to give all Brazilian women the opportunity to join the fast-growing Brazilian tech economy. One of their programs in March, a women’s only workshop set up to teach young girls the basics of coding and web design, filled up in minutes and had a waitlist that was almost 200 people long. The obvious demand and interest is what keeps women like Chan, a program manager for PrograMaria, working to secure the opportunities for women to join the tech workforce.

“The interest is there,” Chan told Americas Quarterly. “What’s missing are opportunities directed at women.”

You can read the full story from Americas Quarterly here.

(H/T: Americas Quarterly)


READ: TECHNOLOchicas Is Empowering Latinas To Chase Their Technology Driven Dreams

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In Brazil, Four Women Have Been Killed Every Day This Year

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In Brazil, Four Women Have Been Killed Every Day This Year

Since the start of 2019, four women have been killed daily in Brazil — and human rights leaders want the South American country to tackle the gender violence crisis more aggressively.

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), the human rights arm of the 35-member Organization of American States, described the deaths as “alarming” and stressed that more needs to be done to combat violence against women at its roots.

“The commission calls on the Brazilian State to implement comprehensive strategies to prevent these acts, fulfill its obligation to investigate, prosecute and punish those responsible, as well as to offer protection and comprehensive reparation to all victims,” the Washington-based IACHR said in a statement.

In 2015, Brazil, joining nations across Latin America, took its first major step to address the growing killing of women, passing a law that gave a legal definition to the crime — femicide — and instituting jail sentences for convicted offenders up to 30 years.

But, nearly five years later, IACHR is calling for the Brazilian government to do more, particularly in strengthening prevention and protection measures.

“It is inadmissible that women with protection orders are murdered, that they do not have sufficient shelters or that their complaints are not properly taken into consideration,” Commissioner Margarette May, IACHR’s president and rapporteur for women’s rights, said.

According to Human Rights Watch, while Brazil, the largest country in Latin America, has a population of more than 200 million, there are only 74 shelters for survivors of domestic violence in the nation.

IACHR added that many of the fatal victims of gender violence in Brazil, disproportionately Black, Indigenous and queer women, are often shot dead in their own homes by current or former intimate partners who have a history of abuse.

“The commission notes with concern that in most cases, the murdered women had previously denounced their aggressors, faced serious acts of domestic violence or suffered previous attacks or attempted homicides,” the IACHR said.

With Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s far-right president who has been compared to Donald Trump, taking office last month, activists are concerned the matter won’t be wholly addressed. As a candidate in 2018, Bolsonaro, who has already renamed the existing ministry of human rights to the ministry of women, family and human rights, combining indigenous rights with women’s issues, was the only person running for president who did not denounce the murder of Rio de Janeiro councilwoman and Afro-Brazilian defender of human rights Marielle Franco.

Read: One Of The Men Suspected In The Slaying Of Councilwoman Marielle Franco Has Been Arrested

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One Of The Men Suspected In The Slaying Of Councilwoman Marielle Franco Has Been Arrested

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One Of The Men Suspected In The Slaying Of Councilwoman Marielle Franco Has Been Arrested

On Tuesday, Brazilian authorities announced that they had two suspects in the case of slain councilwoman Marielle Franco, who was admired and loathed for her advocacy around racial equality, women’s and LGBTQ rights and police brutality. Ten months after her March 2018 killing, Brazilian news outlet G1 reported that local police have arrested one suspect, Ronald Paulo Alves Pereira, while a second, Adriano Magalhães da Nóbrega, remains at large.

Pereira, a military police officer and militia commander, and Nóbregais, the leader of the Office of Crime for a militia that controls the Rio das Pedras neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro who is believed to be the hired assassin, both have ties to Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, a newly-elected far-right leader who has been compared to President Donald Trump for his policies and treatment of LGBTQ individuals, women’s rights and the country’s Indigenous communities.

According to Broadly, Nóbregais and Pereira, who was being investigated for his alleged leading role in the death of five young people in Rio’s Baixada Fluminense district, were honored by senator-elect Flávio Bolsonaro, the president’s son, in the midst of the probe.

“I cannot be held accountable for the behavior of someone I do not know, whose actions have only been reported now by this organization,” Flávio wrote in a statement he shared on Twitter Tuesday.

After Franco’s death, then-presidential hopeful Bolsonaro was the only candidate to not make a statement addressing her killing, with his own campaign adviser saying that Bolsonaro’s opinion on the matter was “too controversial.” Both he and his son have also expressed approval of death squads like that of which Pereira and Nóbrega are a part of. In 2003, the president stated that groups like such “replaced the death penalty” in the country.

In addition to Pereira and Nóbrega, special units issued arrest warrants for 11 other men in relation to the organized crime.

Franco’s life and dedication to marginalized communities will be honored by one of Rio’s Samba Schools at Brazil’s carnival this year.

Read: Afro-Brazilian Councilwoman Marielle Franco Was Murdered And Her Supporters Believe It Was Retaliation For Her Progressive Politics

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