On Saturday 18 of May, as part of the Brazilian National Day to Combat the Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children and Adolescents, public rallies were held in cities and towns around the country. Cristino Castro took part.
In 2000, the National Day to Combat the Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children and Adolescents was set in law for for May 18, the anniversary of the death of Araceli Santos, an 8-year old girl, who was kidnapped, raped, and murdered 31 years ago, in the state of Espírito Santo.
The exploitation networks are active in all regions of the country, but the largest concentration of cases is in the North and Northeast. Most of the victims are women and adolescents between 15 and 25 — the group most affected includes girls between 15 and 17. The profile of the victims shows that they generally come from families with low levels of income and schooling, live with relatives, and, in many instances, have already suffered some kind of sexual violence at home.
The Brazil Tourism Ministry is focused on ‘Protect campaign – do not look away’ deals with combating violence against children and adolescents. The campaign launched in February will be highlighted at festive occasions and large events such as Carnival, the Confederations Cup and World Cup.
In addition, the new National Plan to Combat Sexual Violence against Children, of the National Council for the Rights of Children and Adolescents was launched on May 15.
The campaigns are necessary to continue in long term for more effective prevention and response to sexual exploitation of children and adolescents.