For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 
Contact: 

Thanu Yakupitiyage, thanu@350.org

350.org Stands in Solidarity With the People of Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON - Extraordinary protests have swept Puerto Rico demanding the immediate resignation of Gov. Ricardo A. Rosselló of Puerto Rico. The confrontations marked an escalation in the political crisis in Puerto Rico after hundreds of pages of a private chat between the Governor and his closest aids was leaked, revealing a slew of inappropriate exchanges laced with misogyny, homophobia and jokes about the dead from Hurricane Maria. This unleashed months of pent-up frustration over the Governor’s handling of Hurricane Maria, his education policies, and the federal oversight board that controls Puerto Rico’s finances. Many protesters are holding signs displaying “4,645”, referring to the number of people, who may have died after Hurricane Maria. 

The following is a statement from 350.org’s U.S. National Organizer  Amira Odeh, who is from Bayamón, Puerto Rico:

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“Almost two years after Hurricane Maria, communities here on the island are still recovering, and yet the government has the audacity to joke about the lives of those lost, while doing nothing to ensure our long-term recovery. This is unacceptable and appalling, and as Puerto Ricans, we do not stand for this behavior. We stand against the lewd misogynistic, homophobic, sexist, and insensitive behavior by Governor Rosselló, his inner circles, and his Cabinet. 

“With hurricane season already upon us, Puerto Ricans are reminded of the toll that the combined effects of colonialism, classism, corruption, environmental destruction and disaster capitalism have on our communities. We need leaders and new models of democratic governance that are dedicated to just hurricane recovery, access to health and education services, and to having our human rights and right to safety respected without hurtful austerity measures. We are rising up because we deserve better.”

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350 is the red line for human beings, the most important number on the planet. The most recent science tells us that unless we can reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 350 parts per million, we will cause huge and irreversible damage to the earth. But solutions exist. All around the world, a movement is building to take on the climate crisis, to get humanity out of the danger zone and below 350. This movement is massive, it is diverse, and it is visionary. We are activists, scholars, and scientists. We are leaders in our businesses, our churches, our governments, and our schools. We are clean energy advocates, forward-thinking politicians, and fearless revolutionaries. And we are united around the world, driven to make our planet livable for all who come after us.

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