Connect
To Top
 

Brazilian Feminist Starts Twitter Campaign After Sexually Assaulted by Uber Driver

In Brazil, a woman is assaulted every 15 seconds and killed every two hours. In Rio Grande do Norte, a state in northern Brazil, violence against women has risen 39 percent in the last four years. Despite Brazil’s recent progress in women’s rights and gender equality – there was a significant increase in female involvement in the workforce in the last decade and even a woman president in recent years – the system and culture still has a ways to go regarding the treatment of women in the nation.

Brazilian blogger and activist Clara Averbuck experienced this firsthand when she was sexually assaulted by her Uber driver. The driver took advantage of Averbuck’s inebriation on the way back from a party by pulling her into a dark street near Averbuck’s home and sexually assaultin her. Averbuck’s face was bruised as she was knocked to the ground. Averbuck launched an online campaign afterward, sharing a post on Facebook about her experience the next day.

“Well, I’m a statistic again,” the post begins. Averbuck explains the assault, debates whether or not she should report the driver, and criticizes how women’s complaints are never taken seriously by the police. It ends with, “The world is a horrible place to be a woman.”

The hashtag #MeuMotoristaAbusador (#MyMotoristAbuser) was then used on Twitter to share similar experiences with male drivers. Several women used the hashtag to share security measures that they use in Ubers, such as photographing the license plate of the car and sending it to friends and family. The tweets quickly raised attention online, and the campaign was covered by various English-based sites, such as Buzzfeed and The Guardian despite being based in Portuguese.

“I received a message from the driver saying I was hot. I said I’d report it. He said he knew where I lived,” reads one translated Tweet. Another tweet talks about someone much closer than an Uber driver: “My ‘friend’ gave me a ride, when I was asleep he took me to his house and tried to rape me.”

Clara Averbuck also runs a feminist blog, A Woman’s Place, which features posts from various contributors on topics such as rape, dating, important female figures, and misogyny. Averbuck is a well-known feminist blogger in Brazil and has published a number of books since her rise to fame in blogging. Of the attitudes toward gender in Brazil, Averbuck has said, “Masculinity is constructed on violence, on domination and on subjugation of what is feminine.”

Averbuck and other Brazilian women have noted that the Brazilian legal system does not believe or take women seriously in accusations of assault. The police and courts do little to help women, and a low budget exacerbates the already lacking aid.

This problem is also evident with domestic violence; many women cannot find a way to leave their abusers, and those that do find a way cannot stay hidden from them or obtain restraining orders. Just before the 2016 Olympics, Alexsandra Moreira was publicly stabbed 21 times by her abusive husband shortly after she had finally left him. She reported his actions to the police and escaped to a women’s shelter.

The fact that a victim of domestic violence was not protected after reaching out for help, along with the fact that sexual assault by male drivers seems to be concerningly common, shows that something in Brazil must change.

Featured Image by r. nial bradshaw on Flickr

Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Be Informed

  • How to Manage Perfectionism

    Perfectionism can be extremely harmful as well as difficult to manage. Luckily there are ways to cope and improve your mental...

    Lydia SchapiroSeptember 24, 2020
  • Naomi Osaka Advocates for Racial Justice

    Learn about how star tennis player, Naomi Osaka, shows her social activism and support to racial justice on the court.

    Lydia SchapiroSeptember 16, 2020
  • Sustainability at Home

    Cultivating sustainability in the home is easier than you think! Learn about the easy ways to make your home more eco-friendly....

    Lydia SchapiroAugust 27, 2020
  • How Will College Change in the Fall?

    Keep reading to learn about the question marks surrounding the coming semester.

    Lydia SchapiroAugust 26, 2020
  • Egypt Making Strides Toward Equality

    Egypt took a step further in the direction of women’s rights a few days ago, approving a law that would protect...

    Kalyn WomackAugust 21, 2020
  • Black Mothers: The Risk of Giving Birth

    Serena Williams was not the first black woman to be ignored by her doctor post-partum. Black mothers consistently balance the joy...

    Kalyn WomackAugust 14, 2020
  • No More Bumps: 5 Steps to Smooth Skin

    Ladies, it’s hard to feel nice and smooth after shaving when ingrown hairs and bumps immediately take the spotlight. However, not...

    Kalyn WomackAugust 13, 2020
  • Healthy Social Media Use

    Social media presence has increased for decades, remaining incredibly prevalent in everyday life. Cultivate healthy habits by learning about the effects...

    Lydia SchapiroAugust 12, 2020
  • No Woman was Surprised by What Happened to AOC

    A few weeks ago, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was insulted by Representative Ted Yoho being called a “f—ing bitch” and “dangerous.” Afterwards,...

    Kalyn WomackAugust 12, 2020
  • The Meaning Behind #ChallengeAccepted

    Recently, a trend has surfaced on Instagram where women nominate one another privately to post a black and white picture of...

    Kalyn WomackAugust 11, 2020