Families Face Eviction Amid Stadium Construction For Major Sports Events In Brazil
A study says that as Brazil prepares to host several sporting mega-events, "human rights abuses and authoritarian interventions by the authorities are going on behind the scenes, favoring major urbanization projects and stadium remodeling," according to Fabiola Ortiz of the INTER PRESS SERVICE. The state has forced almost 30,000 families across the country to leave their homes, according to the Comite Popular da Copa e das Olimpiadas (World Cup and Olympics People’s Committee), "made up of around 50 social movements, researchers, NGOs and trade unions." The Committee's report, "Megaeventos e Violacoes dos Direitos Humanos no Rio de Janeiro" ("Mega-events and Human Rights Abuses in Rio de Janeiro"), said that in Brazil alone, which will host the 2016 Olympic Games, 3,000 families have already been displaced from their homes and another 7,800 are facing eviction. The study claims that "the forced displacement of thousands of people and the privatization of public areas constitute the dark side of Brazil's sports projects." One of the study coordinators, sociologist and urban planner Orlando Alves dos Santos, Jr. said, "Our fears are being confirmed. The benefits and social legacy that are so widely trumpeted really hide a dark legacy: an elitist, segregated and unequal society. It is a sad thing to see" (IPS, 5/18).