Proud of growing prosperity and the millions of new consumers elbowing into the country’s broadening middle class, Brazil’s leaders prefer snapshots of new houses, new cars and the crane-dotted cityscapes of Latin America’s biggest economy. Along with the progress, though, has come a surge in drug use. Demand for cocaine has soared along with the economy over the past decade and fueled an abundant supply of crack now ensnaring thousands of new addicts. Legions of the addicted roam city centers across Brazil, many of them venues chosen to showcase Brazil’s ascendance during the 2014 World Cup of soccer and the Olympic Games in 2016.
Reuters has put together a moving photo essay on the subject. Click the pic to see more.