The mayor of Flint, Mich., feels a “sisterhood” with the mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Mayor Karen Weaver sent a letter of support to Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz last Wednesday (Oct. 4), one day after Donald Trump visited Puerto Rico to throw paper towels at people and survey the damage left over from Hurricane Maria.
“The people of Flint stand side-by-side with you, and we commend you,” Weaver’s letter begins. “We send our prayers, and this letter, in hopes to edify your strength. You must stand steadfast and continue to do everything in your power to save your people.”
Weaver went on to note that Trump’s tweets claiming that Puerto Rico wants “everything done for them” broke her heart “and the hearts of many Americans.”
She also said Trump was “misinformed” in reference to his comments about the U.S. budget being thrown off by hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico.
“The people need a voice, and as elected officials, we are the voice of the people that we took an oath to serve,” the letter continues. “I commend you for shouting, screaming, yelling if necessary to get the response the people of San Juan deserve. It is our duty to our citizens. It is our families, our friends, and our neighbors, we are serving.
“I too have had to speak out, and to call for the Emergency in Flint, regardless of what other officials thought. Flint’s water crisis was started by government decisions to save money, but leaders refused to acknowledge their mistake and take action.”
In closing, Weaver says, “I am utterly disappointed and outraged by the lack of active engagement and support from this administration during the recent visit. Self-congratulations and political agendas have no place in the realm of public health in the face of survival. Survival is everyone’s first priority.
“We will relentlessly continue to press and demand for this administration and all the appropriate federal agencies to acknowledge and sympathize with your plight, and do everything possible to make the situation better,” she vowed before adding, “Flint, Michigan stands with the people of Puerto Rico as you fight through your urgent water crisis.”
Cruz recently made another plea for getting water to Puerto Rico. Apart from structural damage and a shortage of necessities like food and water, roughly 90 percent of the island remains without electricity.
Read Weaver’s full letter to Cruz below.
Flint Mayor sends letter to San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz:
I am “outraged by the lack of active engagement from this administration” pic.twitter.com/dIr5X2jmao
— NBC Politics (@NBCPolitics) October 5, 2017