The Committee on the Constitution, Justice and Writing (CCJ) of the Legislative Assembly of Paraíba (ALPB) decided this Monday morning (23) to maintain the veto of bill no. 1.436/2019, authored by state deputy Estela Bezerra (PSB) which created the “Menstruação Sem Taboo” Program and provided for the distribution of tampons to women in situations of social vulnerability.
By 4 votes to 2, the Constitution and Justice Commission of the Legislative Assembly of Paraíba maintained the veto of the bill 1436/2019. Deputies Hervázio Bezerra (PSB), Eduardo Carneiro (PRTB), Júnior Araújo (Avante), Ricardo Barbosa (PSB) voted to maintain the veto of the project, while deputies Anderson Monteiro (PSC) and Camila Toscano (PSDB) voted against the veto.
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In Brazil, about 26% of girls, aged between 15 and 17, cannot afford to buy pads to use during menstruation. As they are considered “superfluous” items, they receive taxation, that is, taxes in such a way that the final cost of the product becomes more expensive, making access impossible for women, girls and adolescents in vulnerable situations.
The bill was approved, on March 16, unanimously by the Legislative Assembly of Paraíba (ALPB), however, it was vetoed by the Governor of Paraíba, João Azevêdo (Cidadania), having returned to the ALPB for the analysis of the veto in the Commission of Constitution of Justice and Writing (CCJ) this Monday.
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During the discussion of the veto, one of the deputies spoke of a “digital gang” having been set up to pressure deputies to overthrow the veto of the project. “I’ve never seen so much lowering, so much lies, so much dirt. Deputy thinking it’s bad because it was requested on social networks, turning the agenda back to the navel itself”, declared the activist Sarah, who followed the session in anticipation of the fall of the veto and in defense, indignantly the dignity of women.
what is menstrual poverty
Despite being little addressed, menstrual poverty causes serious consequences for girls and women, such as dropping out of school and health problems due to the use of absorbent substitute materials such as paper, rags, bread crumbs, which can cause urinary infections. In the states of Rio de Janeiro, Bahia, Minas Gerais and also in the Federal District, similar projects were approved.
The program also provided for lectures to be held in public schools and the preparation and distribution of explanatory booklets; conducting household surveys to identify families where women do not have access to sanitary pads; encouraging the manufacture of low-cost absorbents; distribution of sanitary pads and collectors for adolescents and women in the socio-education and prison systems, in addition to those living on the streets and in extreme poverty.
“They want to make the project unconstitutional. And it isn’t. We still have to fight for the project in plenary,” he added, after the CCJ’s decision to maintain the veto of the “Menstruação Sem Taboo” project. “The issue of menstrual poverty is a serious factor of social inequality, fueled by the taboo, lack of information about one’s own body and cultural stigma”, explains Congresswoman Estela Bezerra.
Source: BoF Paraíba
Edition: Heloisa de Sousa