With the World Cup set to finally kick off tomorrow, Brazil has already seen a TON of tourists flock to Rio de Janeiro and expects to see a total of approximately 600,000 throughout the course of the tournament.
On the surface, the heavy influx of foreign tourists seems like it might be a good thing. However, the sad truth is World Cup is expected to cause a HUGE rise in prostitution and sexual assault over the next few weeks.
Brazil has gained a reputation for being home to some of the most beautiful women on the planet, and because prostitution is actually legal there, it causes many travelers to assume that Brazilians in general are overly sexual people.
Feminist Nana Queiroz says this mindset combined with drugs and alcohol can cause a big rise in sexual assaults during the World Cup:
"Tourists come here, and they think we are free for consumption. These World Cup people are coming, and we are really worried about how they will behave with Brazilian women. We are worried because there are statistics that say that sexual crimes rise during the games — people drink too much, use drugs, and there are more people around. But in Brazil we have an extra ingredient, which is Brazilians are seen as sexual beings."
Sexual crimes are already a HUGE issue in cities like São Paulo, where it is estimated that a woman is assaulted every 15 seconds. It's also believed that approximately 250,000 kids are being forced into child prostitution.
Of course, some sex workers are hoping to cash in on the tourists brought in for the World Cup. However, others are choosing to take some time off over the next few weeks, especially after prostitutes in South Africa made WAY less than expected during the 2010 World Cup.
Simply put, the risk just doesn't seem worth the reward.
[Image via Getty Images.]
Tags: nana queiroz, prostitution, rio de janeiro, sao paulo, sex, sexual assault, soccer, tourism, tournament, world cup, zportz