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Women's Economic Opportunities and Health in Brazil

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 02:17 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 50.2 
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Women’s economic opportunities and health in Brazil is affected by many factors. Brazilian women’s economic opportunities are affected by such factors as gender inequality, violence from men, and racial inequality. Health is affected by reproductive rights, maternal mortality rates, domestic violence and sexual violence. This paper will examine health and economic opportunities available to women in the countries of Saudi Arabia, the United States and Brazil.

Brazilian women were over half the population in 1998 at 50.6 percent (Reproductive Rights, 2004). The female life expectancy was 75.3 by the 2003 estimate. 86.6 percent of Brazilian women are literate overall and represent 41percent of the workforce (CIA, World Fact Book, 2003 and Blaney, 2004). The main types of employment are in agriculture, service sector, industry and the unemployment rate as of 2003 was 22.3 percent for women (Blaney, 2004).   Half of women in the workforce serve in the informal sector and work in manual and repetitive work. Women in rural areas are half the work population in their regions.

Brazil’s distribution of income is one of the most unequal and like many other countries, serves the interest of the rich. The richest 10 percent possess 50 percent of the income. Men earn 29.2 percent more than woman in the same employment field. Black Brazilian women receive 40 percent lower salaries than white woman and the black population is more likely to be poor overall (Blaney, 2004). Between 1960 and 1990, the share of national income of the poorest half of the population fell from 18 percent to 12percent, and the richest 20 percent increased from 54 percent to 65percent. The nine states in the Northeast have the lowest socioeconomic indicators in the country (PAHO, 1999). Adequate housing, water sanitation, education and daycare centers for women are some of the areas affected by the Brazil’s social inequality.

Many of the poorer Brazilians are not provided with...


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