Personal Health

Quarantine is something for the Rich – how the Virus is spreading in Rio’s Favelas

The message spread in Rios slums quickly via social media: “people, stay at home,” reads the warning about the Coronavirus. “The matter is serious and there are still guys that will make fun of.”

The message continues in a thick red font: “From now on, you stay home, whether you want it or not. Curfew every day from 20 clock. If you are caught on the road, you have to learn how to respect his neighbor.”

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The Letter comes not from the government or the police, but by the Comando Vermelho, the Red command, one of the largest drug cartels of Brazil. The last sentences of which read: “We want the Best for the people. If the government is not able to solve this, is to do it the Organized crime.” Warnings like this are not only common in the Favelas in Rio de Janeiro, but also in the poor suburbs, where the Milicia has a great influence, the militia, a crime syndicate of local gangsters and former police officers.

The Organized crime meddling in the everyday lives of the people in Brazil are not uncommon. It establishes the rules, gives penalties, acts in many places as a kind of mixture of drug gang, order office and the village court, depending on your needs. Embarrassing for the government is that the criminals are right about one thing: The President has so far ruled much too timid.

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Bolsonaro speak of the Virus as a “gripezinha”, a small flu, a Grippchen. He has spread all sorts of stupid things, and his followers until Recently, thrilled, shaken hands.

The criminals set the penalties

The inhabitants of the poor quarter Capote in the Rio suburb of São Gonçalo the of the bands to pre-defined rules. Leticia, a single mother of two children, 32, says the star on the phone that you are, of course, to the prohibition to keep going.

“Here, you have the Power,” she says, and speaks in connection with the criminals, only from the “trafico”, from the trade, the drug trade. “It would be reckless to go now actually on the road. The criminals set the penalties. The police has no influence. The patrol out on the main streets. To us in the district, the police officers come in only rarely. On it you can not leave anyway.”Another mother says that she’ll take the government anyway seriously. “We’re, of course, with how the world behaves, what is going on in Italy for a tragedy,” says Rebecca, 35, which lost in the train of the crisis, your Job as a kitchen help in a restaurant. You have to keep to the rules, the distance, no more parties to celebrate, even if our President makes a fool of himself about it. But in the meantime, he has understood it well“, she pushes afterwards.

Actually, Bolsonaro has changed course, although – as in the United States are – especially the governors of the States, the go ahead. In the state of Rio de Janeiro schools are closed, the buses only to a very limited extent, people are asked to avoid groups, and especially festivals.

First Coronavirus Deaths in the Favelas

The city of Rio de Janeiro, is largely cut off from the outside districts. The same time reports are coming in: There is the first Corona-dead in the Favelas and Infected almost anywhere. The risk of Infection is particularly great here. In some poor areas there is no running water. The people live close together, up to twelve people in one apartment. The health care is poor, the number of Tests, and protective masks is limited.

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Rebecca, who not only lives with her sister and their three children in a house, but also with your diabetes sick mother, and your heart sick stepfather, says it is representative of the many Brazilians of Course the Old life with us. Where do you live otherwise? Should we put you on the road? Quarantine is something for the Rich.”

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