Topic

Hurricane Maria

36 petitions

Update posted 3 months ago

Petition to Department of Homeland Security, President of the United States

Waive the Jones Act for Puerto Rico to Help Rebuild its Infrastructure and Economy

Everyone has seen the unprecedented devastation in Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.  The entire island is without power and thousands of Americans may die.  Many have asked how they can help.  This petition focuses on cutting through bureaucracy that could cost lives and add to the suffering of millions of Americans in Puerto Rico.  The Jones Act (Merchant Marine Act 1920, 46 U.S.C. § 883) prevents foreign ships from carrying cargo between the US mainland and noncontiguous parts of the US like Puerto Rico. Foreign ships can't stop in Puerto Rico to offload goods. Instead, goods are dropped off on the mainland and brought to the island on US flag ships. This makes everything more expensive, and in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, could actually cost lives. The Department of Homeland Security extended a waiver of the Jones Act to relieve PR, but the waiver expired on September 22, 2017.   I started this petition on Saturday, September 23rd.  By September 28th, this petition garnered nearly 500,000 supporters, and President Trump and DHS agreed to waive the Jones Act for 10 days.  While this is a good start, Puerto Rico will need additional time to rebuild its economy and infrastructure and should receive the benefit of foreign support.  For example, Germany has already begun assisting Puerto Rico with restoring its power grid.  By signing this petition, you are telling the Department of Homeland Security and the President of the United States to waive the Jones Act for 12 months to give Puerto Rico the relief it needs to recover and rebuild its infrastructure and economy.  

Jessica P
549,417 supporters
Update posted 7 months ago

Petition to Andrew D. Hamilton, Rich Baum, Lynne P. Brown, Ellen Schall, Tracey K. Gardner, Josh Taylor

NYU Took In Students After Hurricane Maria -- They're Not Ready To Go

NYU participated in the Hurricane Maria Assistance Program (HMAP) and has hosted 57 students for the Spring 2018 semester. At least 25 students have expressed a desire to stay. In a letter addressed to President Hamilton, students say: "We humbly request that you consider the reality under which HMAP was first conceptualized, compare it to the one we face today, and then consider our proposal to extend the program from its original one-semester plan to a two-semester plan." The students received an email response declining the request, and they have not felt heard, so they have now taken to the media, including this article in Buzzfeed.    These are the facts:  Puerto Rico continues to struggle 7 months after the hurricane.  There are communities in the dark, access to healthcare is limited, including mental health services, which are desperately needed as evidenced by the climbing rates of suicide and self-reported rates of depression and anxiety.  Cutting HMAP pushes students into a chaotic environment which will not allow them to thrive, much less focus on school work. This social injustice is a travesty and indicative of the 2nd class citizenship Puerto Ricans have traditionally experienced.  A power outage just last month left over 800,000 residents in the dark.  This alone is undeniable evidence of the precarious situation our citizens still face on the island, and many families fear for their safety. Our Demands We applaud NYU for activating HMAP in collaboration with universities in Puerto Rico. HMAP saves lives by addressing key social determinants of health, and this petition calls us to address the educational risk that will result from cutting HMAP short. The students are asking for a meeting with the President, so they can be heard. Like all U.S. Citizens, we ask that these students be treated with respect and that the NYU President and administration consider the moral responsibility they have to ensure the academic success of these bright, young students.  We ask NYU to join other higher-learning institutions to extend its HMAP program for an additional semester so that these students may be afforded the opportunity to fully recover and overcome the devastation they have experienced. Our request is simple: 1. President Hamilton opens his office to host a meeting with HMAP beneficiaries. 2. NYU extends HMAP benefit through December 2018 for students to enroll in the Fall semester. 3. NYU extends housing, healthcare and professional mental health services to HMAP beneficiaries.  More to watch and read here: Blackout in Puerto Rico (PBS Frontline, May 1 2018) Puerto Rico May Day March Turns Violent (Al Jazeera, May 2, 2018)   Who are we? Collective Action for Puerto Rico (CAPR) is a collection of faith-based organizations, community leaders and concerned citizens of the U.S. and of the Puerto Rican diaspora, based in New York City and includes support from the following organizations: Union Theological Seminary, Middle Collegiate Church, Fort Washington Collegiate Church, Intersections International, and the Bronx Coalition for Hurricane Maria Evacuees.    

Collective Action for Puerto Rico, in partnership with Middle Collegiate Church
90 supporters