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Child Prostitutes at the World Cup Are Selling Sex for 50 Cents

3 months ago

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RYOT POINTS

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Photo: DocumentingBrazil.com

Outside of the crowded, spirited World Cup stadiums, life in Brazil looks pretty different.

While we gather in bars to cheer for our respective countries, we’re probably not thinking about the huge number of kids selling sex on the streets of Brazil.

Roughly 600,000 people have flooded into the country to celebrate the tournament, and with them comes an influx of child prostitutes being exploited all over the country at the World Cup host cities.

Prostitution is legal in Brazil for anyone over the age of 18, but many of these children — some as young as 10 — are accepting as little as fifty cents for sex.

This documentary from the 1Real campaign is exposing the darkness of Brazil’s trafficking industry:

“These girls come from extreme poverty, a culture of social exclusion and tradition of profound disrespect for women,” Antonia Lima Sousa, a state prosecutor, told CNN.

Along with prostitution comes the use of drugs, specifically glue, which the children sniff to help them endure their devastating work and ignore their hunger pangs.

“Sniffing the glue makes me feel dizzy and numb and it stops me feeling hungry so I don’t need to eat. It helps me cope with the violence and danger on the streets,” Lorissa, a child sex worker, told the Daily Mirror.

Lorissa went on to tell of the extreme violence that comes with sex work. One of her friends, a 14-year-old girl, was recently murdered.

She told the Mirror, “A man picked her up by the Metro train station and she had sex with him. But afterwards he refused to pay, killed her and dumped her body.”

Unfortunately, some of these girls reportedly decide to sell their bodies — but it’s often out of desperation for food and money, and many of them are sold into trafficking by their parents.

Furthermore, if they’re under 18, they can’t legally decide to prostitute themselves. So it’s not really a choice at all.

Thiago, a former pimp and trafficker, revealed to Time that he convinced parents to hand over their daughters for between $5,000 and $10,000 — a low price for a human life that traffickers can exploit again and again.

“I sought the girls in Recife because there is so much poverty there. It makes it way easier to convince the girls to come down and prostitute themselves,” Thiago said.

This isn’t the first time the World Cup has drawn such abuse of children. CBS News reports that child exploitation increased by 30 to 40 percent during the 2006 and 2010 World Cups, which took place in Germany and South Africa.

And these crimes aren’t limited to the World Cup. Other sporting events are dangerous breeding grounds for sex trafficking, too.

In fact, 16 juveniles were rescued from being forced into prostitution at the 2014 Super Bowl.

Michael Osborn, chief of the Violent Crimes Against Children unit at the FBI, told the AP, “Large sporting events draw a lot of people into a compressed area with a lot of disposable income and as part of that you attract a certain criminal element.”

The U.S. State Department has estimated that 250,000 children are currently involved in prostitution in Brazil. Sadly, the World Cup merely makes an existing problem worse — and that problem will continue to destroy lives once TV crews and soccer fans leave the country.

“[The police] aren’t worried about these children growing up in a healthy environment, with jobs and housing, health and education. They’re worried about hiding them,” a nun who assists pregnant teens in Brazil told CNN.

Many organizations are starting campaigns to expose the truth about the exploitation of children for sex in Brazil, but the real issue comes down to getting real police support behind the issue.

As Sister Carmen Sammut, the president of the International Union of Superiors General, told CBS, “Without awareness, without acting together in favor of human dignity, the World Cup finals may turn out to be a terrible shame instead of a feast for humanity.”

Need a pick-me-up? Check out these author-recommended articles about empowered kids:

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These Badass 6-Year-Old Girls Would Rather Skateboard Than Play With Barbies

RYOT NOTE from Brittany

The 1Real campaign is taking a stand against the sexual exploitation of children in Brazil during the World Cup, and you can get involved by sharing the documentary and spreading the word! Click the Action Box to join them in raising awareness and exposing the truth about child prostitution. And be sure to share this story to Become the News.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE ACTION

Tagged:

brazil campaign child prostitution Featured News police sex trafficking world cup
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33 comments
PatriciaLima1
PatriciaLima1

I'm brazilian girl and I have shame this society patriarchal....

jojoskittles121
jojoskittles121

I mean I agree with iCouldBeBambi , the clothing these days is The Cause and Problem and I've said this before in other articles, just be a tomboy an wear sport shorts and a regular t-shirt that isn't tight but atleast airy enough and long enough that it covers most of your shorts as well - but sadly girls these days want to look 'pretty' an wear what they want to wear, and you know everything pretty much goes downhill from there. 

iCouldBeBambi
iCouldBeBambi

The problem is, This pic is what the average 14 year old wears daily. Go to Forever 21, American Eagle Outfitters any of those places and see what is displayed for 13 and 14 year olds to wear, Crop tops, short shorts, almost sideless razor back tank tops. If you want to change the mind set of teens and what is sexy, then maybe you should change what is acceptable for a child to wear. Parent are saying this is ok...Its summer, wear shorts that ride two inches under your belly button and barely cover the underside of your butt cheeks, it's hot out, go ahead and wear that cropped tank. No! It's not "ok" to let your teenager out of the house looking like that! Maybe people should try being a parent instead of a friend to their teens. And maybe start boycotting the clothing industry on trying to over sexualize teen girls. I think the writer and editor of this piece chose a perfect pic for this article. Because it's what society is deeming ok that young girls wear. 


It is horrible that sex trafficking of ANY kind still goes on in this world. But corrupt governments that bleed their people dry based upon their own greed is why these poor families and girls do this shit. It's the fastest way to make ANY kind of money. 

CarlyFournier
CarlyFournier

What gets me are the statistics that are being spewed out: 27 million victims. How do they get  those numbers? It seems to me that if you are able to track numbers like that then you should be able to rescue them. It's impossible to know what the actual numbers are in such an underground organization. Increasing the numbers sure helps to get funding for your project when you're lobbying the government though.

JonathanWalton
JonathanWalton

"Child" and "prostitute" don't go together. A child is not able to "prostitute" themselves and should never be sold for sex. This is rape and exploitation. Period. 

ManoelAnjos
ManoelAnjos

This are the reflexes of a socialist and corrupt government that was implemented in Brazil

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

Isn't it kind of inappropriate to have a sexy, provocative picture at the top of the article? Are you promoting this or against it?

csa1
csa1

@PatriciaLima1 And I am european. I have shame that once the patriarchal society was destroyed (some 50 years ago when comunism came to mi country) women and man alike started to sell their bodies for money,drugs became passion(in the last 25 years after the fall of the Berlin wall),honor was disposed for materialism (in a women's/girls case some small cash for cosmetics,nice coats from fur and expensive cars). Im ashamed that pedophiles want to adopt the children of my nation, that the children don't want to be educated,cultural and loyal citizens but instead they want nice car,money,american junk foods and they are ready to pay for this with their bodies,lifes,minds etc.

Sorry for my bad English 

LJ27
LJ27

No, the problem is the disgusting individuals that pay for these 'services' in no way is it a child's fault for dressing shorts/skirt and a pretty top. People should be allowed to dress how ever they want without a fear of 'uncontrollable' male urges rearing their ugly head. Over sexualisation of children? The only thing that's over sexualising them is sexual abuse, and whilst there is clothing that may be deemed too 'grown up' for a child because it's not easy to play in or they look like a mini adult, there are millions of people that would never look at a child and think they look sexy in the clothes they are wearing. You've essentially justified paedophillia by suggesting that a man or woman can't help themselves once they see a bit of flesh on a child and if a girl doesn't want to be sexually assaulted she should dress like a boy. Perhaps we should be reminding people that sexual assault is wrong and there is NEVER a justified reason for it rather than constantly blaming the victim. And perhaps also remind them that it's okay to be female.

vigilantes
vigilantes

@iCouldBeBambi Did you even read the article? It's largely about how sex traffickers prey on impoverished families and girls who have no opportunities. I'm sure the issue goes much deeper and darker than even what was portrayed in the article but somehow I doubt that the clothing they sell at Forever 21 has anything to do with a 12 year old girl from the slums of Brazil being sold to a pimp. 

Child sex trafficking has gone on much longer than the existence of these trendy clothing companies. The issue here is not the clothing. A person's body is their own and no matter what they wear they should not be seen solely as a sexual object. The issue is that we need to protect young girls from predators who either want to use them for money or sex.

Yes, pedophiles and rapists often offer excuses that a girl was "asking for it" and blame the way the a victim dresses or acts, but that's the symptom of a disease, not the cause of it. I could not imagine a more ignorant comment than the one you posted. Please, educate yourself on the issue at hand, or at least read the article before commenting. What I learned from your post is that you just looked at the picture and couldn't be bothered to actually read a really important and compelling piece of journalism.

KPREYES
KPREYES

@iCouldBeBambi  This has absolutely nothing to do with clothing. Human trafficking in these areas is deeply rooted in poverty. In other more developed areas it has a lot to do with children being targeted from unstable relationships with their parents and over the course of long thought out built of trust between the predator (sex trafficker) they are coerced into leaving their homes and are removed from familiar environments. If you are referring to sexual assault you are not only incorrect in saying that clothing is an issue, but you are making it unsafe for victims to be able to seek assistance. Sexual assault can and does happen to anyone regardless of the clothing being worn. The majority of the time victims know their perpetrators. In making the case that clothing is the problem, blame is removed from the actual origin=The Perpetrator. Attitudes like this are known as blaming the victim and make it hard for survivors to be able to seek help. After someone's autonomy over their own body is removed, the least that we can do is recognize that clothing does not control behavior. If any of you really want this to improve or if you want those in your life to be able to be helped if the unthinkable were to occur a mindset change has to occur. 1 in 5 women in the US are raped during their lifetime and that could be someone you know. I would want those I cared about to be able to come to me for support. I would want an environment where they would not fear being ostracized when they are already dealing with the most psychological and physical tragedies that could ever occur. And lastly, as a male I find it insulting that anyone would suggest that my behavior could be changed by the outfit that someone else is wearing.  

MonikaElizabeth
MonikaElizabeth

Yes! All women should wear burkas until they're married! Covering up these young sinful women will surely improve the way men view them! And if she can't cover up properly, then surely we will know that she is available for sex. It's perfect.

ZipperGooch
ZipperGooch

@CarlyFournier they use a small sample to gather up basic information for a larger picture. For example, if 15% of a small village have child prostitues, they assume that 15% of the whole country has child prostitutes. Its not exact and it will never be right but that's one way to track it down. This is how stats are made. They use the same thing to track down tv viewers, drug users, the amount of people who consume milk, etc.

LJ27
LJ27

@CarlyFournier Your logic is completely flawed. Firstly, 27 million victims is an estimate. Secondly, just because they know (roughly) how many people are being exploited at the moment in slavery doesn't mean they know where they are; we aren't chipped at birth. All you need to do is move people around enough over various borders in order to hide them, because the different agencies don't share information openly and often connections aren't made even if the information is available. Contrary to popular belief not all criminal are stupid and more often than not know how to work the system to benefit them. Preventing the exploitation of people should be the top of all Governments prorities because it's probably happening in your city or even on your street

RyanPrice1
RyanPrice1

Using your logic, the FBI should be able to stop all drug trafficking, murders, and illegal immigration. Because they have statistics for those as well...

lutherking
lutherking

@KarleyKent I agree with you. In propaganda, psychology is used. And a picture of a less provocative, sexy girl, would highlight contempt more

AngelNuno
AngelNuno

@KarleyKent Its just providing a strong image toward a strong topic. I doubt she's trying to promote anything, 

lindy12
lindy12

@LJ27 I agree with LJ27. Dressing a certain way is not a way of tacitly giving consent. Consent is an active, verbal, sober yes, by someone who is legally old enough to give consent. People should have the right to dress however they want and to feel safe. 


To say that the onus is on these children to dress more 'approrpriately' in order to protect themselves casts the blame onto them as opposed to the pimps and pedophiles abusing them. 


We must teach people not to rape, not to molest and stop trying to teach girls (and boys, because they too can be victims) how to not be abused. 

NotTooCreative
NotTooCreative

@MonikaElizabeth

This person is not a muslim, she is not referring to them as sinful-

you are insinuating that this is the viewpoint of muslims. This isn't the statement iCouldBeBambi is going for at all, and while it is still a very controversial statement that I don't agree with, this sort of comment instills the idea in people's mind that this is the viewpoint of muslims, muslims do not wear burkas for reasons such as this.

She did not refer to them as 'sinful' children- rather children wearing inappropriate clothing that makes sexual abuse more likely.

I must reiterate- I do not support the statement.

RyanPrice1
RyanPrice1

Like it or not, the picture the author chose represents reality. I have walked the streets in Pattaya, Thailand and seen what the young girls there wear to sell themsves. People don't want to see images like this because it forces them to face the reality of what is happening to these kids. Once your eyes are opened to the horrors of child sex trafficking, you can never go back. What will you do to fight for these children?

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

I meant it's indirectly promoting it, because it makes people think of a child prostitute as sexy. They could've picked a more appropriate image with a strong effect without drawing people to this story by clicking on the girl with the hot body, then reading that it only costs 50 cents to have that.

jmhlanga1602
jmhlanga1602

@KarleyKent @lutherking Should it really matter what kind of picture they used to spread the awareness of human trafficking. Sex trafficking for children or older can be advertised with them wearing "sexy" "Hot" clothing and there are some that have been doing it for so long that with the use of drugs among other things, has left their bodies and "hot" looks to deteriorate. Either way, this article is to sober the mind into reality. Whether someone clicks on the site out of curiosity from the "hot" alluring photo, in the end they are faced with the truth. 


KarleyKent
KarleyKent

@RyanPrice1 like for example these pictures would be more effective (first one realistic) without so much focus on how hot the girl is.

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

@RyanPrice1 lutherking is the only one who understands what I am saying. Its not about what she is wearing. I've been to Thailand myself and the girls are MUCH LESS attractive than the girl in the picture. My point is that the girl in the pic is a model, and the author used a sexy model to attract people to the page. And psychologically speaking the photo would make men consider buying a prostitute (even for a second) when the purpose of the ad is to deter.I'm not a sheltered person, I'm speaking on a deeper psychological level about the effects of advertising.

TheresaYoung
TheresaYoung

@KarleyKent True but fact is that these kids are looking "sexy" on purpose to advertise. It's important to see that kids are dressing this way to promote themselves. Children are developing at a earlier rate then we did as kids. I have a 9 year old that has to watch what she wears because of her early development. Meanwhile clothing manufactures are getting risky in their lines for teens and kids. Why? They are just babies. When these girls hit the streets they don't want to look like kids. It's legal in Brazil and if they don't look like kids then the person "buying" them for the night won't get into trouble. No matter which way you look at this, it's wrong! We need to pray for society to wise up and start treating each other with respect!

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

And in order to make a difference on this issue we have to address not only the supply but more so the demand.

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

The issue is the general publics ignorance toward the brain manipulation of the media, as proved by so many of the comments disagreeing with or downplaying my post. For every 1 person who clicks on the article arousing contempt there will be many more men now contemplating going to Brazil for this reason. Yes the media manipulation makes a difference and obviously much more than most people are aware of, and sadly most people keep rejecting this truth.

lindy12
lindy12

@KarleyKent it seems as though you have missed the entire point of the article. 


to fixate so strongly on the way the one girl shown is dressed is to only perpetuate the deep roots of rape culture within society that perpetuates these problems and endorses a victim-blaming mentality.


the way someone looks is not a way of them giving consent to be assaulted. these are children. it does not matter how they dress or what they look like. 


would you say that anyone who looks attractive or is dressing in a way that might be considered 'sexy' is indirectly asking for people to assault her? It is this kind of mentality that makes it so hard for justice to be done. People have a right to wear what they want to wear, to look how they want to look and to be safe. No one has the right to abuse another human being. shame on you.

KarleyKent
KarleyKent

No, u are missing my point. I was referring to the authors choice in promoting the page, and the effects of framing. That's it.

Child Prostitutes at the World Cup Are Selling Sex for 50 Cents

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