Economic exodus means two-thirds of Puerto Ricans may soon live in US

by Alan Yuhas | The Guardian  |  published on July 3, 2015

3000Facing a crisis of monumental proportions at home, tens of thousands of people are fleeing a Caribbean island in search of a better life in the United States only to find hardship and struggle on American shores. Their stories sound like those of millions of migrants – poverty at home, where the economy lies in tatters – but they differ from millions of others: they’re already American.

Unable to pay its $73bn debt, Puerto Rico has begun rationing water, closing schools and watching its healthcare system collapse and 45% of its people living in poverty. Emigration to the mainland has accelerated in recent years, activists say, and data shows that from 2003 to 2013 there was a population swing of more than 1.5 million people.

“This new wave of immigration can be compared with the immigration in the 1930s and 40s,” said Edgardo González, coordinator of the Defenders of Puerto Rico, an activist group. The Great Depression and second world war spurred the so-called “Great Migration”, when tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans moved to New York every year for nearly two decades.

  • curtmavi38

    Where in the hell will we put them? They need to stay in the country and help it to recover and not run. They need to show the world they can stick with their country and fight to make it better. I’m sure most of them had something to do with their country’s downfall We should not make it easy for these people to abandon their country. Stay fight, you will be happy you did. meh

  • nonstopca

    I think they are citizens…..saying “don’t let them come to the main land” is the same as saying, a person living in Hawaii can’t move to the mainland.

    • VirgoVince

      Hawaii IS a state, pr is NOT!!

      • nonstopca

        territory or state….does that matter?

  • VirgoVince


  • Roy Clingenpeel

    Puerto Ricans already are American citizens. Their governor like many of the governors on the mainland is a poor manager and a crook. They, like the mainland, are primarily on welfare and have poor work habits (they don’t work) and are decedent’s of Spanish slavery, black and native Indians.They sill have criminals hiding in the mountains raiding the cities and robing travelers like in our old west. Their primary income is rum (sugar cane) and tourism along a very narrow strip on the coast.

  • msueh

    Well, this is sure one way of “spreading the wealth around”! Aren’t you & I about at the tipping point already? Frankly, I’m past it – on SS and still working.

  • curtmavi38

    America should close it’s borders until we get this mess that Obama has forced on America taken care of before we let in another onslaught of more people. America cannot take care of the whole world. These people in Puerto Rico have spent themselves into oblivion with there spending more than they take in. The people didn’t do it their leaders did and that is what is happening to America.
    Those who voted for Obama are responsible for the mess America is in also. We who could see around the corner knew that you don’t put a person into the office of president that has never owned a business and only has community service as his experience. I think that voting age should be put back to 21. These kids voting most them don’t know even who they are voting for and couldn’t care less. Don’t tell me if they are forced to go into battle they should be able to vote, that’s nonsense no one goes into battle unless he signs up voluntarily. I think that every able bodied boy and girl who graduate high school should voluntarily go into the military for at least 2 years so that they can learn first hand what it means to be American this also includes those who drop
    out of school, you would see less crime and you would see more kids with some sense of who they are. meh

    • msueh

      10 upvotes here!

  • Lorene B

    It is not wise for everyone who has hardships in their own country to flee to the US to escape it. They should work in their own countries to make things better, or, they will soon be exchanging one bad situation for another.

  • GAGIRL12

    Just what we need. More additions to the welfare rolls. Close all borders and stop all immigration now!!

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