Andrea Werner is the mother of a 10-year-old autistic child. It was because of Theo that she became an activist for the rights of special-needs children and created a blog for them and their families.
As her name grew in popularity, two political parties invited her to run for office this year. Andrea accept and will run as a left-wing Liberty and Socialism Party (PSOL) candidate—trying to win a seat in Brazil’s male-dominated Parliament.
“It’s a battle but it’s ok. I am prepared and I am not afraid. More women should do this because the men there are not thinking about problems in our daily lives”, said Andrea. “When you see some countries that have more women working in the Congress, they worry more about health and education.”
In 1997 Brazil enacted a law determining that the parties’ candidates list had to have at least 30 percent of women. However, the new rule did little to increase female presence in Congress.
It’s not easy for newcomers to make a name in politics. But in Brazil, there are signs that a growing number of women are willing to accept that challenge. Andrea Werner is one of those few women that has taken up that challenge.
By Paulo Cebral