Lestari tried to keep it a secret from her family and friends, but her classmates found out anyway. They teased and mocked her, which made her feel isolated and embarrassed. The stigma around menstruation is rooted in social, cultural and religious norms that have far-reaching consequences. Young girls are not equipped with the correct information to ensure their safety, from basic hygiene to preventing unplanned pregnancies. While there has been progress in urban areas, the stigma around menstruation remains acute in rural Indonesia such as East Java and parts of Sulawesi.
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In April, Jokowi announced that he would ban child marriage, but failed to provide a timetable for abolition. In August, the government moved eight Moluccan political prisoners more than 2, kilometers from a remote high-security prison in Nusa Kambangan to a prison much closer to their families. Although Jokowi issued a plea for religious tolerance in his annual State of the Nation address on August 16, his administration has failed to translate his rhetorical support for human rights into meaningful policies during his first term in office. Religious and gender minorities continue to face harassment.
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