Puerto Rican Day Parade displays pride

Puerto Rican Day parade highlights Hurricane Maria recovery | TheHill

The bodies of 307 people are now being kept in the morgue and in four refrigerated containers in a nearby lot, the authorities said.

It was with these facts at the forefront that thousands of union workers, environmentalists, civil rights advocates, and ordinary Americans took to Fifth Avenue Sunday afternoon for the annual event.

"The National Puerto Rican Day Parade has always been an occasion to celebrate the many contributions Puerto Ricans have made to this country", said Melissa Mark-Viverito, campaign director for the Power 4 Puerto Rico coalition.

Before the parade, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. had said it needed to take a political tone. Along the parade route, people carried signs with tributes like "New York Stands with Puerto Rico", "You will not be forgotten" and "Decolonize Puerto Rico". "We are Americans, and I think that I came to represent the fact that no one wants to admit that nearly 5,000 lives were lost in Hurricane Maria", Ortiz, 53, of Brooklyn, said.

The disgust with Trump was channeled into vocal demonstrations of Puerto Rican pride, strength, and resilience-"Puerto Rico Se Levanta" was a common refrain-as revelers on the jam-packed sidewalks spent hours waving flags, cheering block after block of marchers, and joyfully singing along to whatever song was blasting from passing floats.

Some demonstrators chanted "Respect Puerto Rico" as the parade passed Trump Tower.

He also said that, at least on the parade board's part, this year's focus on the island's recovery needs would be about the issues, and "not about the politics".

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

'Maria unmasked that we are a colony, ' said Pabon, 66, of the Bronx.

Moments before taking his place in the annual Puerto Rico parade, Gov. Andrew Cuomo charged that the weak federal response to victims of Hurricane Maria is because of an inherit racism coming from the White House.

'They said, 'Great. We can work on our tans.' And I said, 'Not exactly.

Others dressed in black, mourning the people who died during Hurricane Maria as well as to protest the lack of support Puerto Rico received.

The administration was roundly criticized for its performance after Maria struck, and hundreds of thousands in the U.S. territory remain without electricity.

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