Initiative Attempts to Restore Lost Benefits to U.S. Residents from the Freely Associated States

In 1996, U.S. residents from the Freely Associated States(FAS) suddenly had their Federal benefits taken away.  Congress had just passed a landmark welfare overhaul bill, and the legislation incorrectly classified FAS residents as immigrants. The status of FAS migrants became essentially the same as that of immigrants from any other sovereign nation for the purpose… Read more »

Rhode Island Officials Express Support for Puerto Rico Statehood

A group of elected officials from Rhode Island has written to the Congressional Rhode Island delegation in support of statehood for Puerto Rico. Nellie M. Gorbea , the Rhode Island Secretary of State; L. María Rivera , the Mayor of Central Falls;  Glendaliz Colón, Central Falls Councilwoman; Elizabeth Fuerte, Newport Councilwoman; Valerie González, Woonsocket Councilwoman;… Read more »

Singer Macy Gray Calls for New, 52 Star Flag

Singer Macy Gray wrote in a Juneteenth op-ed piece at MarketWatch that it is time for a new U.S. flag. She advocated for a 52 star flag, designed to include both Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. as new states. Old Glory is “confusing” Gray also wants color changes, though her new design is otherwise the… Read more »

Chairman Grijalva Approaching Decisions on Puerto Rico Status

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Chair of the House Natural Resources Committee, held a second day of hearings on the two Puerto Rico status bills currently pending before Congress. “I recognize the responsibility of this Committee to play a leading and constructive role in resolving this issue, which is a priority for the people of Puerto… Read more »

US Justice Department Analyzes Puerto Rico Political Status Bills

Rep. Raul Grijalva, (D-AZ), chair of the House Natural Resources Committee, delayed the second day of hearings on Puerto Rico’s political status to allow the Department of Justice (DOJ) to clarify the constitutionality and feasibility of the two bills being considered. The Department of Justice has responded to the request, and Grijalva has released the… Read more »

Biden Budget Expresses Support for Increasing Resources in Puerto Rico

The 2022 budget submitted by the White House Office of Budget and Management promises improvements for the U.S. territories, including Puerto Rico. President’s Budget Message The document begins with the President’s Budget Message, which Mr. Biden presented to Congress earlier this month. “Where we choose to invest speaks to what we value as a Nation,”… Read more »

New Hearing Scheduled for Natural Resources Committee

The House Natural Resources Committee will hold a second day of hearings on Puerto Rico’s status on Wednesday, June 16, 2021, according to El Nuevo Dia. The first day of hearings pitted HR 1522, the Puerto Rico Statehood Admissions Act, against HR 2070, the AOC-Velazquez bill proposing a constitutional convention for Puerto Rico. Witnesses at… Read more »

President Biden Releases Statement on SSI for Puerto Rico

President Biden issued a statement today emphasizing his support for Puerto Rico parity within the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program despite the fact that the Department of Justice will file a brief today in support of the federal law that excludes Puerto Rico from SSI. “I believe that Puerto Rico residents should be able to… Read more »

Working Women in Puerto Rico Earn Slightly More Than Men

Puerto Rico is unique among the states and territories of the U.S. in that the average income for women is higher than that of men: women’s median income is 103% of men’s. Women make up 45% of the workforce in Puerto Rico, according to a report in Caribbean Business. Women in the U.S. as a… Read more »

Notable Puerto Rican Writers

Puerto Rico has a strong tradition in literature, both among people living on the Island and those who moved to the States. The long list of notable writers who found their success in New York provides an excellent counterargument to those who worry that becoming a State would suppress the culture of Puerto Rico. Julia… Read more »