Unpaid Brazilian police threaten Olympic strike

The latest chapter in the ongoing Brazilian meltdown comes from folks who are charged with keeping order.

Form the Japan Times:

Police in Rio de Janeiro protested Monday over late payment of salaries and a lack of equipment ranging from car fuel to toilet paper as the Brazilian city prepares to host the Olympic Games.

About 300 police clad in black T-shirts stood on the steps of the Rio de Janeiro state assembly to denounce what they said had been their abandonment ahead of the Olympics, which start on Aug. 5.

“The police’s priority is the people, the government’s priority is the Olympics,” read one banner at the rare public display of anger by a force that finds itself in the midst of both a state budget crisis and a lethal surge in criminal activity.

One officer, who like other protesters asked not to be identified for fear of repercussions at work, told AFP that he had only been paid half his salary last month and was still waiting for this month’s salary.

“I haven’t been paid my overtime for five months either,” the 40-year-old officer said.

More from teleSUR English:

Hundreds of police gathered outside the police headquarters in the neighborhood of Lapa in Rio de Janeiro, the state capital, marching with signs through the downtown streets until they reached the headquarters of the National Assembly.

“We are unsatisfied and without the prospect (of a solution), we can’t rule out a gridlock during the Olympic Games in August,” Neira said.

Police authorities put out a statement saying they understand the claims, which they also believe are fair.

According to the statement, a commission would analyze the requests, and begin working on the urgent cases.

All we can ask is ‘What next?’


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