HF Statement on Today’s Island-wide Blackout in Puerto Rico

NEW YORK, NY. Wednesday, April 18, 2018 – Hispanic Federation’s President José Calderón has released the following statement regarding today’s island-wide blackout in Puerto Rico.

“Puerto Rico is yet again experiencing zero power transmission throughout the entire island. This is on the heels of last week’s electrical outage that affected more than 840,000 people. That millions of U.S. citizens are allowed to suffer repeated and massive failings of a broken electrical grid in one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world is an outrage. Because of the deplorable conditions that have not been adequately addressed in Puerto Rico, the United States can now claim the distinction of having the second longest blackout in world history. Tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans have yet to experience the return of even normal electrical service since Hurricane Maria devastated the island seven months ago.

We call on the federal government to immediately release the $2 billion already allocated by Congress and to provide the additional $15.6 billion of the cost estimated by the U.S. Department of Energy to rebuild the energy grid of Puerto Rico in a sustainable way. The island must not have anything less than a modern, energy efficient electrical grid that can either withstand the impact of a hurricane or quickly recover from one.

As the clock ticks on the start of the next hurricane season – only 44 days away—all responsible federal agencies must seriously and immediately address the power and infrastructural needs for Puerto Ricans. Otherwise, they will be held accountable for lessons unlearned and warnings ignored.”

About the Hispanic Federation

Hispanic Federation is the premier Latino nonprofit membership and grants making organization staffed by and based in diasporic Puerto Rican and Latino communities in the U.S. Founded in 1990, HF provides grants and assistance to more than 100 Latino community-based member agencies serving millions of individuals. Using a social justice lens, HF advocates and provides services in the following areas: economic empowerment, civic engagement, immigration, nonprofit capacity-building, education, health and environment. HF has offices in Florida, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C. Its headquarters is in New York City. Learn more about the Hispanic Federation and its Puerto Rico relief efforts here.

For more information about the Hispanic Federation, visit HF’s website, www.hispanicfederation.org.