Puerto Rico

Amy Sisk / StateImpact Pennsylvania

Six months after Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, 200,000 residents still lack electricity, the mayor of the island’s capital city told a crowded Carnegie Mellon University ballroom Wednesday night.

Carmen Yulín Cruz, who received a master’s degree from CMU in the 1980s, came back to the campus to speak at “Energy Week” alongside Pittsburgh’s mayor.

She said the situation in Puerto Rico is still dire for many.

John Bender / Rhode Island Public Radio

For thousands of Puerto Ricans displaced by Hurricane Maria, this will be a difficult Christmas.

Provided photo from Rosana Guernica

More than three weeks after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, many residents of the island are still struggling to gain access to clean drinking water, electricity and lifesaving medicines.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

It's been more than two weeks since Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico—knocking out the power grid, leaving people homeless and hospitals with dwindling supplies. Despite President Donald Trump's comments contrasting the storm to a "real catastrophe like [Hurricane] Katrina," many in Pittsburgh are eager to respond to the island's needs.

Nearly 500,000 pounds of hurricane relief supplies were collected for Puerto Rico during a two-day drive at PNC Park earlier this week. The Pittsburgh Pirates organized the effort in part to honor legendary Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente, who was born on the island and dedicated his life to humanitarian efforts.

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Pittsburgh's museum honoring Pirates Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente is collecting supplies and money to benefit hurricane victims in Puerto Rico.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports the Clemente Museum is working with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Restaurant Depot for the relief effort. The museum will host an open house on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Carlos Giusti / AP Photo

The son of Pittsburgh Pirates legend Roberto Clemente is teaming up with two local groups to send critical supplies to Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria.

Brother's Brother Foundation and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce announced they'd be gathering monetary donations, medical supplies and non-perishable foods for residents to deliver as soon as airplanes are allowed on the island.

According to the organization, 100 percent of disaster funds go to help people in affected areas.

Jana Kasperkevic

On Sunday, 23 percent of Puerto Rico’s eligible citizens went to the polls, and 97 percent of them voted to make Puerto Rico America’s 51st state. That’s about half a million people. The vote was nonbinding, and because of the low turnout, it might not be enough to persuade Congress to convert Puerto Rico from a commonwealth to a state.

Brad Larrison / NewsWorks

 

Pennsylvania has voted Democratic in the last six presidential elections. But this election season, analysts say it's possible that the state will swing Republican. 

Puerto Rico now has its first Olympic gold medal, courtesy of tennis star Monica Puig, who beat Germany's Angelique Kerber in the women's singles tournament at Rio's Summer Olympics Saturday.

"I"m speechless," a smiling Puig said after her historic win. "I wanted it so bad."

"I never imagined in my wildest dreams that this would happen," Puig added — and she said her experience in Rio de Janeiro has been like a dream. She's looking forward, she said, to waking up tomorrow morning and seeing her gold medal sitting on her bedside table.

Building Ties Between Pittsburgh and Puerto Rico

Jun 20, 2014

Music can bring people together, but can it inspire people to travel almost 2,000 miles to find work in a new city?

16 Pittsburgh community organizations are sponsoring the appearance of Puerto Rican salsa band El Gran Combo at the JazzLive International Festival this weekend to launch a  project to promote Pittsburgh as a destination for Puerto Rican workers, especially professionals, migrating from the island to mainland U.S.