Brazilian Led Coalition of Grassroots and National Organizations Intensifies Protests of “Person of the Year” Award For President Jair Bolsonaro & Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 9, 2019

Media Contacts:

  • Natalia de Campos, Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee - NY 917-449-0022, defenddemocracyinbrazil@gmail.com

  • George de Castro Day, Rise and Resist 718-200-0756 daygeor@gmail.com

Brazilian Led Coalition of Grassroots and National Organizations Intensifies Protests of “Person of the Year” Award For President Jair Bolsonaro & Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State

What: Protests & Press Conference (May 14th )

Who: 14 groups in New York City, including: Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee- NY, Rise and Resist, Revolting Lesbians, Earth Strike NYC, Extinction Rebellion Amazonia, Reverend Billy & Stop Shopping Choir, Mulheres da Resistência, Alerta NYC, Coletivo Humanas, United Against Racism & Fascism, Metropolitan Anarchist Coordination Council, United Artists & Activists Union, Party for Socialism and Liberation- NY, Reclaim Pride with support from NY Senator Brad Hoylman, Amazon Watch, Greenpeace, Rainforest Foundation US & the U.S. Network for Democracy in Brazil

Speakers:

  • Natalia de Campos, Co-Founder, Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee New York

  • Christine Halvorson, Rainforest Foundation US

Where: Marriott Marquis Hotel Times Square: 1535 Broadway (outside, at West 46th Street entrance)

When: Tuesday, May 14th at 5:30 PM

(Main Protest will happen on Tuesday, May 14 at 5:30PM. Please see the calendar of events, below)

Background:

The Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce’s annual gala was originally scheduled to be held at the American Museum of Natural HIstory, as in past years. Protests erupted when they announced offering their “Person of the Year” recognition to extremist right-wing Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. The museum cancelled the contract, Cipriani Hall refused to take it in, and the event has been moved to the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square.

NY State Senator Brad Hoylman circulated a petition to cancel Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce “Person of the Year” award to Jair Bolsonaro given his explicit attacks on Brazil’s LGBTQI community. The petition garnered 82,000 signatures. (https://www.change.org/p/marriott-cancelbolsonaro/u/24501172 )

Another petition denouncing Bolsonaro’s statements and actions attacking indigenous rights and territories garnered thousands of signatures and was delivered to the Permanent Mission of Brazil to the U.N. by indigenous leader Sonia Guajajara on April 23rd. Brazil's indigenous peoples are under increasing threat by the Bolsonaro regime's devastating assaults on social and environmental protections.

Bolsonaro’s declared racist comments, anti-LGBTQ, misogynist, plus his persecution of these communities, and his climate-change denial are widely known.

Despite this, the Marriott Marquis has refused to cancel the event. Bolsonaro announced on Friday May 3, that he will not be attending on account of growing protests. The Brazil-U.S. Chamber of Commerce has maintained the Person of the Year award to Jair Bolsonaro and Mike Pompeo, and many of the sponsors too, even with the clear opposition of business partners, clients and activists. In recent days public announcements have circulated that Bolsonaro will visit Texas, where it was thought there would be less opposition. Since then, Texas groups have also come out strongly against his visit, and Dallas Mayor’s office denies having invited him, as rumours had it.


A calendar of upcoming related events follows, culminating with a major protest at the Person of the Year Award Ceremony. May 14, starting at 5:30 PM

May 12 through May 14: Fourteen consecutive days of protest (since April 29) - 5:30pm everyday at the Marriott

May 13: 12pm at Americas Society/Council on the Americas: ASCOA is complicit with Bolsonaro who destroys the Amazon, endangers the lives of Indigenous peoples and members of LGBTI communities and threatens racial equality, women’s rights, affirmative action, and press and academic freedoms

May 13: 1PM at Brazil-US Chamber of Commerce, 485 Madison Ave @52nd st


MAY 14: COALITION ACTION AT THE MARRIOTT: 5:30PM-9:00PM -  Protest to the award to Bolsonaro and Mike Pompeo. With Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee, Revolting Lesbians,  Rise & Resist- NY and 11 other organizations, including special guests to be announced. Visual and musical performances by Rev Billy & Stop Shopping Choir, Rude Mechanicals Orchestra & Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee -New York. Press call between 5:30-7pm

More updated, last-minute information at: https://www.facebook.com/events/602164266968023/

Photo: Natalia de Campos and George De Castro-Day/ Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee - NY with Coalition #cancelBolsonaro

Photo: Natalia de Campos and George De Castro-Day/ Defend Democracy in Brazil Committee - NY with Coalition #cancelBolsonaro

Natalia Campos