Articles on Puerto Rico

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Two months after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, the island remains devastated. Here, a photo taken outside Barranquitas, Puerto Rico, on Nov. 10 shows downed trees and a washed-out road. Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Puerto Rico two months after Maria: 5 essential reads

Scholars answer key questions about Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Huricane Maria, which destroyed the island two months ago.
Soldiers deliver food and water following Hurricane Maria. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Maria will fundamentally change US policy toward Puerto Rico

Two hurricanes in Puerto Rico's past fundamentally transformed the island's economy and politics. Maria will be the third, says a historian.
El Huracan María arrasó miles de árboles en Puerto Rico para revelar las casas y comunidades anteriormente escondidas en el bosque. Ahora hay grafiti por toda la isla que afirma que, “Detrás de los árboles vive mucha gente.” Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Soy bibliotecaria en Puerto Rico y sobreviví al Huracán María. Esta es mi historia.

Una bibliotecaria puertorriqueña que tiene una historia personal con los huracanes describe la realidad brutal que vive esta isla caribeña, a más de un mes del paso de María.
Hurricane Maria denuded forests in Puerto Rico, revealing once-hidden homes and communities. A graffiti-sprayed saying is now popping up across the island, noting that “Behind the trees live people.” Lucas Jackson/Reuters

I’m a librarian in Puerto Rico, and this is my Hurricane Maria survival story

A Puerto Rican librarian with a personal relationship to hurricanes describes the brutal reality of life on this Caribbean island more than a month after Maria and Irma left their mark.
Most Puerto Ricans are still in the dark, as is the mainland about the recent hurricanes’ economic impact. Reuteres/Alvin Baez

Why Puerto Rico ‘doesn’t count’ to the US government

Although Puerto Ricans are American citizens, what happens on the island tends to stay there, at least in terms of economic data.
Plush toys, recovered from a flooded home, hang out to dry on a wrought iron gate in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Ramon Espinosa/AP

The mental health toll of Puerto Rico’s prolonged power outages

Long after the hurricane's over and the power comes back, residents can still experience lasting mental health issues.
He didn’t throw paper towels in Texas. Why Puerto Rico? AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Is racial bias driving Trump’s neglect of Puerto Rico?

Evidence shows that US taxpayers are less willing to support extensive disaster relief when the victims are not white. Could that explain the Trump administration's lackluster support for Puerto Rico?
Few Puerto Ricans expect the Trump administration to help the island as it did hurricane-hit Texas and Florida, yet the island’s recent bankruptcy has left it facing a humanitarian disaster. Reuters/Ricardo Rojas

Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy will make hurricane recovery brutal – here’s why

Hurricane Maria has left 3.4 million Puerto Ricans facing shortages of food, health care and transit, an American humanitarian crisis fueled by the US territory's May 2017 bankruptcy.
A satellite image of Hurricane Irma spiraling through the Caribbean. NOAA/AP

In the Caribbean, colonialism and inequality mean hurricanes hit harder

The Caribbean is facing its second deadly hurricane in as many weeks. This isn't just bad luck: the region's extreme vulnerability to disaster also reflects entrenched social inequalities.

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