RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov. 13, 2017 -- Massive protests took place in Brazil against a comprehensive labor reform on Friday, a day before it takes effect.
The protests swept 24 out of 27 states of the country. In Ceara state, around 20,000 people took the street, according to news site G1.
The labor reform has been approved by the Congress and signed into law by President Michel Temer. However, unions and civil organizations still did not give up pressuring the government and congressmen into reconsidering the measure, and organized a series of marches and protests all over the country.
In addition to the labor reform, citizens also protested against a social security reform bill which is waiting to be voted in the Congress.
Both the labor and social security reforms are considered highly damaging to workers, according to critics, who say the labor reform will make workers more vulnerable, reduce their rights and will be ineffective in curbing unemployment.
The social security reform is criticized for establishing a minimum age of retirement regardless of how many years one has worked, which will in practice make poorer people work for many more years and retire with lower pensions.
The labor reform passed with relative ease in the Congress, but the social security reform is considered a much harder sell, as the government does not have, at this point, enough votes to approve the bill before the end of the year.