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Living racism and violence: a study on the vulnerabilities of black women and the attempt to prevent HIV/AIDS in a Quilombo community in Alagoas

OBJECTIVE: To analyze the forms of racial and gender violence, quilombola women's behavior regarding STD/AIDS, in Quilombos Remaining Communities in Alagoas. METHODS: Qualitative approach from 10 focus groups, comprising 12 to 18 women, with age ranging from 16 to 55, which permeated the themes of gender, racism, domestic violence, gynecological preventive exam, HBU (Health Base Unit)/FHP (Family Health Program) use, sexually transmitted diseases, sexual partnerships, condom use, drugs. The theoretical framework reference is based on phenomenology, proposed by existentialist Merleau-Ponty, and on the theoretical contribution of Foucault. RESULTS: The statements indicated that a strong contingent of women suffering from domestic violence in physical, sexual, psychological, and moral heritage. As for racism, the quilombola women expressed that they are victims of racial prejudice, with underestimating expressions, humiliations in the street, at school, at parties, in attendance at public health clinics. In the speech, it became clear that they are very vulnerable to infection of STD/AIDS and other health problems, lack of a more effective health policy and educational work in these communities. CONCLUSIONS: These data revealed the precarious living conditions of this population, poor access to health services, lack of preventive practice for sexually transmitted diseases. It is necessary a long-term effective intervention of the state agencies in education and health, aimed at promoting racial and gender equity of the Quilombola women and their health.

Quilombola Woman; Violence; Racism; STD/AIDS; Prevention

Faculdade de Saúde Pública, Universidade de São Paulo. Associação Paulista de Saúde Pública. Av. dr. Arnaldo, 715, Prédio da Biblioteca, 2º andar sala 2, 01246-904 São Paulo - SP - Brasil, Tel./Fax: +55 11 3061-7880 - São Paulo - SP - Brazil