Brazil has come face-to-face with the negative impacts of the realization of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, especially those living on or near the project sites.
Hundreds of thousands of people in the 12 host cities have been forcibly evicted and have lost their homes and livelihood. Moreover, FIFA has no intentions of allowing small and family businesses to benefit from the emerging opportunities during the Cup.
FIFA maintains exclusion zones with a 2km radius around stadiums and fan sites where they control the movement of people and the sale of products, putting countless street vendors out of business. The poor are bearing the brunt of the burden and are met with fierce repression when they try to stand up for their rights.
"The works for the FIFA World Cup must go on - and we are forced from our homes? Do I have to leave the place where I have lived for 25 years?"− Morador do Morro Pavaozinho, Rio de Janeiro.
FIFA’s World Cup contributes to the violation of several human rights, such as the right to adequate housing, the right to free movement, the right to work and the right to protest. Illegal under international human rights law, forced evictions have occurred all over Brazil in the wake of the Cup and have left many homeless and destitute.
Affected families often receive no information, compensation, alternative housing, or access to remedies.
In Recife in 2013 alone, over 2.000 families from the Coque Community were forced out of their homes. Moreover, the creation of FIFA exclusive zones will force countless street vendors out of business. In Belo Horizonte, over 130 have lost their source of income during the reconstruction of a stadium and are now prohibited from selling in the vicinity.
FIFA has caused severe harm to many Brazilians. The company lacks a sense of responsibility and denies any connection to the alleged human rights violations. FIFA’s promise to leave behind a positive legacy stands in sharp contrast to the reality so far.
FIFA has imposed a series of conditions onto the host country which have contributed to these violations. FIFA’s business practices make it complicit in the violations of people’s rights.
FIFA seems to believe that the ‘urgency’ related to their infrastructure projects, as well as the profit they claim to be generating for society, justify their irresponsible behavior. FIFA is exempt from paying taxes, depriving Brazil of at least 1 billion reals (over US$ 400 million).
The Fédération Internationale de Football Association („FIFA“), headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, employs some 310 people from over 35 nations.
The association that has set itself the goal of improving soccer, organizes soccer tournaments, most famously the FIFA World Cup. In 2012, FIFA reported a net profit of $89 million and financial reserves of $1.378 billion. FIFA remains largely exempt from taxes as it is officially seen as a not-for-profit organization.
The organization has been involved in a number of cases of corruption and heavily criticized for their complicity in human rights violations. However, FIFA has largely denied the legitimacy of these claims.