Gender justice

19 de April, 2023

Radiography of homicides due to domestic violence against women in Brazil’s Federal District (Radiografia dos homicídios por violência doméstica contra a mulher no Distrito Federal).

The Brazilian law number 11.340, of August 7, 2006, also known as Maria da Penha Act, created mechanisms to curb, prevent, and eradicate domestic and family violence against women. This legislation broadened the services related to domestic violence provided by public institutions, foreseeing measures that can be organized into three groups of actions. The first includes measures for the punishment of violence, such as police investigations, the possibility of warrantless detention (preventive or not), the restriction of criminal representation for certain crimes, and the removal of Law No. 9.099/95. In the second group, there are measures to protect the physical integrity and the rights of women, such as urgent protective measures and those aimed at their aggressor, in addition to assistance measures, such as psychosocial care. Finally, the third group concerns preventive measures and education (Pasinato, 2010). In addition, the Maria da Penha Act created the Courts for Domestic and Family Violence against Women (JVDF), with civil and criminal jurisdiction. Regarding preventive measures, art. 8 establishes guidelines for public policies aimed at curbing domestic and family violence against women through actions articulated between the federal government, the states, the Federal District, municipalities, and non-governmental actions (Brasil, 2006). One of the guidelines concerns promoting research under the perspective of gender (as well as race and ethnicity) and addressing the causes, consequences, and frequency of domestic and family violence against women. This also aims to nationally systematize the data and the periodic evaluation of the results of these measures. The framework is thus related to the new paradigm of understanding domestic violence against women, which the Maria da Penha Act introduced. Given the lack of in-depth empirical evidence on the subject — which could help develop academic knowledge, formulate and readjust public policies for the prevention and care of the victims of domestic violence —, this study aims to uncover a silent scenario in the Brazilian Federal District.

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