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  • Demonstrators protest against the reform of the retirement and pension system proposed by President Michel Temer.

    Demonstrators protest against the reform of the retirement and pension system proposed by President Michel Temer. | Photo: EFE

Published 31 January 2018

Temer has yet to drum up enough support in Congress for the reforms.

Brazilian unions have called for a “national day of struggle” on February 19, to voice their opposition to proposed pension reforms and changes to the country’s retirement system.

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The unions have called for mobilizations throughout the country in order to pressure legislators from passing the proposals made by the de facto government of Michel Temer.

Part and parcel of his neoliberal economic reforms and policies of extreme austerity, among the proposals is the setting of a minimum retirement age of 65 years for men and 62 for women, as well as increasing the minimum period of contribution before retirees are permitted to collect their full pension.

While Temer's administration says the initiative is essential to guarantee the pension system's ongoing security in the future and to reduce the public deficit, trade unions and labor rights groups have said they would be a huge setback for Brazil.

In addition, while the vote on the unpopular reforms was set to take place at the end of 2017, it was postponed to February 19, because Temer has yet to drum up enough support in Congress.

The deputies of the lower house will be participating in the debates about the reforms.

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