Puerto Ri­can pa­rade to fo­cus on hur­ri­cane

The Washington Post Sunday - - POLITICS & THE NATION -

There will be floats, mu­si­cians and brightly col­ored cos­tumes when the Puerto Ri­can Day Pa­rade makes its way along Fifth Av­enue on Sun­day, as there al­ways are.

But amid all the fun and cel­e­bra­tion, or­ga­niz­ers and par­tic­i­pants want to keep a spot­light on some­thing se­ri­ous — that months after Hur­ri­cane Maria roared across Puerto Rico, and as the next hur­ri­cane sea­son ar­rives, the U.S. island ter­ri­tory is still strug­gling.

“This is a year where Puerto Rico has been dev­as­tated,” said Louis Mal­don­ado, chair­man of the board that over­sees the pa­rade and its af­fil­i­ated events. “We need to keep that part of the con­ver­sa­tion.”

Those watch­ing the pa­rade in per­son will see that in the march­ing con­tin­gents, in­clud­ing one made up of peo­ple who are on the U.S. main­land only be­cause they were dis­placed from their homes on the island, he said. The pa­rade will also honor first re­spon­ders and oth­ers who stepped up to help with emer­gency ef­forts and on­go­ing re­cov­ery work.

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