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English/ Español: Rubio, Scott, Colleagues Urge Biden Administration to Support Vaccine Efforts for Puerto Rico

Apr 22, 2021 | Press Releases

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Rick Scott (R-FL) were joined by Congresswoman Jenniffer González-Colón (R-PR) and Congressman Mario Díaz-Balart (R-FL) in sending a letter to Acting FEMA Administrator Bob Fenton urging the agency to work with the government of Puerto Rico to establish a federally supported mass COVID-19 vaccination site, or propose and implement alternative measures to support vaccine uptake.  

“While meaningful progress in fighting COVID-19 is being made, Americans must regain the confidence to travel to every part of our country freely,” the legislators wrote. “This includes Puerto Rico.”  

“Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rican community in the Continental U.S., deserve fair treatment and consideration during the country’s vaccination efforts,” the legislators continued.   

The full text of the letter is below.  

Dear Mr. Fenton,  

As you continue to work with state and local governments to administer the COVID-19 vaccine directly to Americans through federally supported sites across the country, we urge you to immediately begin working with the government of Puerto Rico to establish a federally supported mass vaccination site, or expeditiously propose and implement alternative measures to support vaccine uptake, on the island.  

There are currently four federally supported mass vaccination sites in Florida, located in major population hubs, that are each capable of administering up to 3,000 shots a day. Approximately half a million vaccine doses have come from these four sites and they are clearly popular among Floridians. Nationally, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) mass vaccination sites have administered 3.4 million vaccines.  

While meaningful progress in fighting COVID-19 is being made, Americans must regain the confidence to travel to every part of our country freely. This includes Puerto Rico. Countless Americans have family members on the island they are desperate to reconnect with and Americans living in Puerto Rico are likewise eager to be at ease traveling to and from the Continental U.S. It is the job of the federal government, in concert with the government of Puerto Rico, to focus on distributing vaccines as widely as possible to support the health of residents and ensure a robust economic recovery. We will not be successful in this goal until every American who wants a vaccine can get one.  

Throughout the pandemic, we have urged all levels of government to work together in a transparent, accountable manner, prioritizing a consistent flow of accurate, timely information. We must continue to put the needs of our communities above all else. That includes the health and safety of our citizens as well as their ability to have a good job and support their families.  

Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rican community in the Continental U.S., deserve fair treatment and consideration during the country’s vaccination efforts. We look forward to your response to this urgent matter and working together to support Puerto Rican families as they, and all Americans, fight to end the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Sincerely,

RUBIO, SCOTT Y COLEGAS INSTAN A LA ADMINISTRACIÓN BIDEN A APOYAR LOS ESFUERZOS DE VACUNACIÓN PARA PUERTO RICO

Washington, DC – Los senadores estadounidenses Marco Rubio (R-FL) y Rick Scott (R-FL) junto a la congresista Jenniffer González-Colón (R-PR) y el congresista Mario Díaz-Balart (R-FL) le enviaron una carta al administrador interino de FEMA, Bob Fenton, instando a la agencia a trabajar con el gobierno de Puerto Rico para establecer un sitio de vacunación masivo contra el COVID-19 con apoyo federal, o proponer e implementar medidas alternativas para apoyar la adopción de la vacuna.

“Si bien se ha logrado un progreso significativo en la lucha contra el COVID-19, los estadounidenses deben recuperar la confianza para viajar libremente a cada parte de nuestro país”, los legisladores escribieron. “Esto incluye a Puerto Rico”. 

“Puerto Rico y la comunidad puertorriqueña en el continente norteamericano merecen un trato justo y consideración durante los esfuerzos de vacunación del país”, continuaron los legisladores.

El texto de la carta en inglés está aquí.