Local advocate furious as Rio street people go missing

April 29, 2016
Joy Crooks
Brazilian soldiers take part in an exercise drill as they train to provide security for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Brasilia, Brazil on Wednesday.

Local advocate for the homeless and mentally ill, Joy Crooks is crying shame at the Brazilian government in light of reports of ill treatment of homeless people in preparation for the 2016 Olympics to be held in Rio de Janeiro. 

Reports are that street people in and around Rio de Janeiro are being arbitrarily detained, while some mysteriously vanish. 

International Business Times has reported that the government has been trying to hide the ugly realities from the media coming to cover the Olympic games, which are to commence on August 5.

Crooks, who heads the Montego Bay-based Committee for the Upliftment of the Mentally Ill (CUMI), described the situation as unfortunate.

“I think it’s an inhumane, wicked, awful thing," she said.

"Would you like somebody scrape you up and dump you or you disappear because an event is taking place in your city?” Crooks questioned.

Though disgusted by the reports in Brazil, Crooks says she is not surprised as injustice is often meted out to street people wherever a major event is to be held in a location they populate.

“It’s not just this Olympics. The same thing happened when the Olympics was in Athens. The same thing happened when the Olympics was in Los Angeles. So it seems to be a practice that seems to be repeating itself both in developed and undeveloped countries,” she said.

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