The Brasilia Consensus
With little media attention, on July 13 through the 16, the XI Regional Conference On Women of Latin America and the Caribbean took place in Brasilia, Brazil to "discuss achievements and challenges relating to gender equality with a focus on women’s autonomy and economic empowerment". As a result, delegates and representatives approved the "Brasilia Consensus." The consensus outlines what was discussed during the conference, including a list of the agreements the representatives decided to adopt.
The event went unnoticed by the mainstream press, and unfortunately, this lack of coverage helps governments ignore the rights their delegates promised to grant women through this consensus.
**The original document for the consensus is in Spanish, and you can read it here: http://www.eclac.cl/mujer/noticias/paginas/5/40235/ConsensoBrasilia_ESP.pdf
**This is the English translation: http://www.eclac.org/mujer/noticias/paginas/6/40236/ConsensoBrasilia_ING...
Here are some things that stood out to me as I read it:
"Bearing in mind that Latin America and the Caribbean is still the most inequitable region in the
world and exhibits widening gender, ethnic and racial gaps; that the social, political, cultural and
economic patterns underlying the sexual division of labour must be changed without delay; and that the
key to this is a new equation between the State, society as a whole, the market and families in which
unpaid domestic work and caregiving are construed and treated as public matters and a responsibility to
be shared among all these spheres,"
"Considering that women’s comprehensive health depends on concrete measures aimed at
reducing maternal morbidity and mortality and adolescent maternity and ensuring a better quality of life,
and that Millennium Development Goal 5 is the furthest from being achieved,"
Those present decided to adopt these agreements:
1. Attain greater economic autonomy and equality in the workplace
2. Enhance the citizenship of women
3. Broaden the participation of women in decision-making and the exercise of power
4. Address all forms of violence against women
5. Facilitate women’s access to new technologies and promote egalitarian, democratic and nondiscriminatory
practices by the media
6. Promote the conditions for the integral health of women and for their sexual and
7. Carry out training and activities for exchanging and disseminating experiences with a view
to the formulation of public policies based on the data collected by the Gender Equality
Observatory for Latin America and the Caribbean
8. Promote international and regional cooperation for gender equality
9. Welcome the offer extended by the Government of the Dominican Republic to host the
twelfth session of the Regional Conference on Women in Latin America and the Caribbean,
and accept this invitation with pleasure
The document goes into great detail about what each of these agreements entail; please refer to the document linked above to read about each one.
Those of us who live, work, or travel to Latin America need to spread the word about this consensus. We need to make sure that governments are held accountable for the promises they have made as part of this consensus. These agreements and calls to action will easily be ignored if the citizens and visitors of these countries ignore them too. If we don't educate other women about this consensus, a simple piece of paper (or a .pdf document in this case) will not help much.
**Official site for the conference: http://www.eclac.org/mujer/conferencia/default.asp?idioma=IN
**The site also offers individual reports on each country: http://www.eclac.org/cgi-bin/getprod.asp?xml=/mujer/noticias/paginas/2/3...
What are some things you can do to make sure that the things outlined in the consensus really get done?