Although Brazil’s various Carnavals are thought be a week of celebration, joy, excitement and fun, reports have also revealed for many years that these events also provoke many incidents of racial discrimination, both in individual cases of racism and as well as in the institutional structure of Carnaval.
Here is a report from yesterday’s (February 20, 2012) report in the online newspaper Terra
Bahia*:cases of racial discrimination in the Carnival increase by 64%, says study
The number of cases ofaggression related to inequality in the carnival routes increased in relationto the Carnival of 2011. At least that’s what is pointed out in a partialreport of the Observatory of Racial Discrimination, Violence Against Women andLGBT of these five days of revelry in Salvador, the capital of the state ofBahia.
According to thereport, in the first 72 hours there were recorded 159 incidents, most casesassociated with racial discrimination, representing an average of approximately65%, with 104 occurrences.
Next are the cases ofviolence against women, with a report of 59 assaults against women, a totalpercentage of 33% and, finally, violence against the LGBT group, with 2% ofcases. No data were released last year.
With the slogan”All people are born free and equal in dignity and rights”, the Observatoryseeks to identify acts of discrimination and racial violence, of gender andhomophobic until the end of the revelry of Carnival.
In the seventh edition,the Observatory operates with 100 employees stationed in the festival circuitand in the six stations installed in the Cruzeiro do São Francisco – SociedadeProtetora dos Desvalidos (SPD or São Francisco Cruise – Society for theProtection of Underprivileged), Ladeira de São Bento, Lapa, Camarote Casa dosBailes (Cabin House of the Dances) – Casa D’Itália and Assufba e FaculdadeSocial da Bahia (Assufba and Social Faculty of Bahia) – Ondina.
The Center alsocollects data to prove the existence of discriminatory actions racial, genderand homophobic, within the carnival circuit. The reported cases help in theformulation and implementation of public policies for the prevention ofdiscrimination and nequality, motivated by race, gender and sexual orientation.
* – Bahia is a state located in northeastern Brazil that is known as the African cultural center of Brazil and it’s large population of African descendants. 70% of Bahia’s population as well as 80% of its main city, Salvador, are African descendants.
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