A Bulletin from Brazil

I returned to Brazil in early March after spending a year abroad and arrived days after the first cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the country. Europe was already experiencing a major crisis, but here the cases were specific to some large cities.Two weeks after my arrival the quarantine started in specific regions and as the virus spread the country stopped. Living quarantined in such a large and diverse country is very complicated. The country is divided into 26 states with different economies and lifestyles. The population of Brazil is made up of 41.3% of informal workers. Convincing these people to stop working to stay at home is very difficult as many who stop will have no income for basic needs.In such a complex situation, government interference to assist these people and a good plan to contain the virus would be expected. But the sad reality is that in addition to the virus, we are experiencing a political war. Brazil is one of the few countries in the world that the president’s irresponsible acts manage to be the highlight of the news at the same time that we live in a pandemic. These three months were marked by several statements by the president trying to diminish the problem and even calling the virus a “little cold”. Some aid programs were created for the population, but they were very reluctant on the part of the government and still fail to solve the problem of many people. Only during this period have we had two exchanges of health ministers and now, his last appointment to lead the ministry was not a doctor or a person in the health field, he was a military man.Brazil now occupies the third world position in the number of victims, many experts believe that we have not yet reached the peak of the disease and even so the quarantine has started to be reduced for economic reasons. There are already more than thirty thousand dead and six hundred thousand infected by the “little flu” said by the president. With the reduction of quarantine the tendency is for this number to increase much more in a short time.I can’t really see an end to it. Thirty thousand lives have been lost, thirty thousand families have been affected and the government has neglected the population. They treat it in a normal and cold way, try to boycott the media daily trying to hide important information and numbers.I hope I can see a light at the end of the tunnel for all of this, but the situation is complicated. While some countries are already trying to adapt to the new “normal” I am sure that we will face a lot here.

Anonymous, Brazil

Published by thegeographerjournalist

My name is Coco Huggins, Editor-In-Chief of The Geographer Journalist and a postgraduate scholar in Geography at The University of Cambridge. Our site aims to publish personal commentaries, articles, essays and artwork from young people across the UK and around the world focusing on a range of issues affecting society today.

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