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Brazilians protest against reforms on pension and education

15 August, 2019Protestors in Brazil took a stand on 13 August against the social security reform promoted by the extreme-right president Jair Bolsonaro, and in defense of public education and employment.

13 August was a national day of protest for Brazil's trade union centers and social movements. Protest actions, assemblies and strikes took place in 200 cities of Brazil. Unions, student and popular movements carried out a series of actions throughout the day to reinforce their opposition to Social Security reform and budget cuts for public universities.

For a second time on 7 August, the chamber of deputies approved a proposed amendment to the constitution (PEC) No. 006/2019, passing it on to the Senate where it also needs two rounds of approval.

From there, the social and trade union movements reinforced their plan of action because they believe that the reform has very harmful points and therefore must continue their struggle. Part of that plan includes putting pressure on senators to vote against and informing society about the risks.

Unions see the pension reform as start beginning of Bolsonaro's agenda to eliminate the rights of the working class, fearing that the promotion of a regressive fiscal reform will follow.

It is necessary to resist and fight back, to reject the constant attacks on the rights of workers and the majority of the population, especially the poorest. Unions are defending a sustainable growth of the economy, and the right to decent work and a decent retirement.

Valter Sanches, IndustriALL Global Union general secretary, congratulated the affiliated unions for an impressive show of resistance all over the country:

“This is the only way to stop the reforms against the working people and cuts on social investment. IndustriALL will continue to support our Brazilian affiliates defending their rights."

Photo credits: CUT Brasil, Ângela Guimarães UBM and Wládia Fernandes.