WASHINGTON D.C.— Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a top member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, cosigned a letter with 144 additional Members of Congress on Tuesday, addressed to President Trump, calling for a stronger response to the dire situation in Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands following Hurricanes Maria and Irma.
“Given the impact of the damage and the population of 3.6 million American citizens affected, we are concerned that federal efforts to date have been insufficient to address the severity of the situation,” the lawmakers wrote. “We know there are DOD elements helping today, and all the service members involved are working very hard, but we are concerned that the scale of DOD assets supporting the operation are inadequate. Thus, we write to urge you to further mobilize the Department of Defense to immediately deploy additional assets in support of Puerto Rican and U.S. Virgin Island recovery efforts.”
Full text of the letter can be found here.
In addition, Congressman Engel also took to the House floor on Monday to urge Congress to act immediately to aid the people in the Caribbean, including fellow U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, who have been devastated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
“We cannot afford to wait,” Engel said while addressing his House colleagues. “People are dying and with every day it gets worse. There’s a lack of food; lack of water; lack of safety; lack of electricity. We cannot just allow this to continue to happen. We must help the people in Puerto Rico, help the people in the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as people in all of the [Caribbean] islands.”
Please note this press release was originally published on September 27, 2017 by Congressman Engel’s House of Representative’s office and posted to this website no sooner than 72 hours after initial publication.