Rio’s mayor has lashed out at the upcoming failure of an Olympics, the state governor has warned they could be a disaster, and now even the city’s prostitutes are willing to write the Games off as a disappointment.
Sex workers in Rio de Janeiro’s red light district are offering their customers a supermarket style sex sale as part of a last-ditch effort to salvage something meaningful from the promise of Olympic glory.
“It’s never been this bad and most of the women here are desperate. But few of us think anything will come of the Olympics.”
Rio sold the Olympics Games as a transformative opportunity that would benefit all Brazilians from every walk of life, but that promise seems fated to go unrealized.
With mere weeks left before the start of the 2016 Olympics Games, the bankrupt city of Rio has been unable to pay its public employees, at least two hospitals have collapsed, and the police have been forced to beg for basic supplies like toilet paper.
A crime wave has rocked the city, and the state’s governor was forced to declare a financial state of emergency as expected Olympic improvements remain uncompleted because of a lack of funds.
Last week, the police protested at the airport by holding signs saying “Welcome to Hell,” and graffiti complaining about the lack of hospitals has popped up all over Rio.
Now, even the prostitutes in Rio’s red light district are ready to admit defeat, sex worker Aline Docinha told the Daily Mail.
“We’re under no illusions. We know we’ll be forgotten during the Olympics.”
Docinha and the other women who work in Rio’s Vila Mimosa red light district have decided to host a supermarket style sex sale in the hopes of profiting off the thousands of foreigners set to visit Rio.
Using an English language flyer, they’re offering an hour of sex for 60 reals ($18), down from the normal price of 90 reals ($27), with a threesome costing 40 reals ($12) per girl for every half hour and 80 reals ($24) for an hour.
The women are hoping to attract both Olympic visitors and athletes to the red light district so they can make enough money to pay their bills. Rio expects to host half a million visitors during the Games, and workers in the city’s red light district want their share of the money.
Brazil’s economy has tanked this year with falling commodity prices and low oil revenue taking their toll on the nation’s economy, Rio de Janeiro’s governor Francisco Dornelles told CNN.
“I want all the people of Rio de Janeiro to understand that the state is experiencing a major financial crisis. There was a problem in the oil sector; there was a problem of economic recession, with our steel industry, with our automotive sector.”
The recession has forced more women to work as prostitutes in the red light district and compete for a shrinking number of clientele. Docinha, who has been a sex worker for 12 years, has seen her clientele shrink from eight customers a day to maybe one, she told the Daily Mail.
“Even then, they try to bargain the price down. There are days that I go home without having made a single centavo. Many Brazilians who used to come here don’t have money to spend anymore.”
The women in Vila Mimosa, Rio’s red light district, are desperately trying to realize the financial reward that all citizens were promised for the Olympic Games, Docinha told the Daily Mail.
“We just want to make enough to pay our bills.”
The first ever Olympic Games to be hosted in South America, the Rio Olympics, are scheduled to kick off August 5.
[Photo credit: AP Photo/Felipe Dana]