Published: Wed, June 13, 2018

Puerto Rican Day Parade participants celebrate and mourn

Puerto Rican Day Parade participants celebrate and mourn

Memorial of shoes honors thousands of Hurricane Maria victims feared dead in Puerto RicoBut this year's parade has a particularly profound meaning as the island of Puerto Rico continues to recover from the devastation left behind by Hurricane Maria.

Julio Pabon led a group of demonstrators who chanted "Respect Puerto Rico" as it passed Trump Tower.

A man rolls on a hover-board along Fifth Avenue during lasy year s National Puerto Rican Day Parade in NY. "I'm just exhausted of the way my island has been treated".

Puerto Rico's morgue is overflowing with unclaimed bodies, the result of budget cutbacks in the United States territory since last year's devastating Hurricane Maria. "This year, we have the challenge of celebrating our culture and communities, while at the same time raising greater awareness around the need for immediate improvements in the post-hurricane recovery efforts on the island and for better treatment of the thousands of displaced families across the mainland living in perpetual limbo".

Cuomo has been an outspoken proponent of the need to help Puerto Rico after the September storm and is expected to take part in this year's event.

The initial deployment of 100 students from SUNY and CUNY schools and almost 20 skilled labor volunteers will stay for two weeks and will assist non-profit rebuilding organizations on the island.

Those watching the parade in person will see that in the marching contingents, including one made up of people who are on the USA mainland only because they were displaced from their homes on the island, he said.

"It would be a missed opportunity this Sunday.if we don't show an act of solidarity, an act of protest, an act of defiance", he said, "to let the world know we still have a president and Congress that still has not done right by 3.5 million Americans".

"It makes me feel sad that still to this day there's people without electricity, still without water, roads are really bad - I was just there in April and the conditions are still bad", one parade-goer said.

Andrew Cuomo decline to take part. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz led a contingent clad in black tee shirts commanding onlookers to Remember!

Trump last week attended a meeting on disaster preparedness at the Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters in Washington. He said the recovery was a "tough job".

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