National Network of Feminist Antiprohibitionists (RENFA)

Feminist Agenda for the Disincarceration of Women


Objectives and target audience

Produce data on the lawsuits and sociocultural profiles of women pre-trial detainees in the cities of Recife and Rio de Janeiro, subsidizing collective public action in defense of the rights of these women, through the submission of habeas corpus by women rights defenders related to the feminist movement, which will be trained to work on the disincarceration of women who fall into the profile of abusive provisional arrest.

Main activities

  • Analyze the data raised in both cities on the legal and social situation of women in pre-trial detention.
  • Publish the systematization of the project’s experience in the form of a manual.
  • Launching the final version of the publication in five states where Renfa is present, organizing a training workshop for human rights defenders to share the methodology of advocacy with the Judiciary.
  • Identify the judicial proceedings that may lead to habeas corpus for women to wait for their trial outside prison.
  • Hold focus groups with incarcerated women and family members to study their cases.
  • Meet representatives of the Public Defenders’ Office, Public Ministry, Social Defense Secretariat, and public policies executive managers, representatives of the Legislative Branch and rights councils to present the project.
  • Lead meetings and present the project.


In Brazil, about 37,000 women are in the penitentiary system, which corresponds to the fifth female prison population in the world – 45% of them are pre-trial detainees and haven’t been tried yet. In many cases, there is a time lag until trial in the first instance, leaving these women in prison for a longer period, than what is considered acceptable. In a demonstration of veiled machismo, women are blamed not only for the crimes they committed but for subverting a moral role that says women cannot commit crimes. Many of these women receive no support, which is exacerbated by the work overload and lack of structure of the Public Defenders.

About the organization

Renfa has the issue of incarcerated women as one of its priorities. It works in the prison system by promoting activities in prisons in São Paulo, Recife and Salvador, aimed at strengthening the citizenship of imprisoned women and their well-being. They also distribute personal hygiene items. The topics covered in the activities are: sexual and reproductive rights, racism, maternity and harm reduction.

Funding Line

Criminal Justice and Human Rights



Total Granted



18 months

Main Themes

Guaranteeing the rule of law and criminal justice

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