The federal constitution states that freedom of conscience and belief is inviolable, and that free exercise of religious beliefs is guaranteed. In addition, the constitution prohibits federal, state, and local governments from either supporting or hindering any specific religion. A committee of the federal Senate held a public hearing on religious intolerance, focusing on the instances of violence against practitioners of African-originated religions. Some members of congress and religious leaders called for the creation of a congressional committee to investigate the violence.
According to the Secretariat of Human Rights (SDH), its hotline received 70 percent more calls about cases of religious intolerance, in some cases violent, than the previous year. Societal discrimination based on religious affiliation was most frequently directed at practitioners of African-originated religions.
U.S. embassy and consulate officials met with members of the National Committee for the Respect of Religious Diversity (CNRDR), which comprises members from various federal ministries, civil society organizations, and faith-based organizations. U.S. officials from Washington met with CNRDR leaders and interfaith communities to promote religious freedom and tolerance. The Department of State Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism visited Sao Paulo in April to meet with leaders of the Jewish and interfaith communities.