Don’t forget Puerto Rico: United sends huge shipment of water

While the 24-hour news cycle has turned its attention to the devastation in Florida caused by Hurricane Ian, Puerto Rico still is suffering from the impact of Hurricane Fiona, which hit the island Sept. 22.

Last weekend, United Airlines partnered with Molson Coors to donate and ship nearly 15,000 cans of water from Newark Liberty International Airport to San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The shipment occurred on two separate flights, one on Saturday and one on Sunday.

In the wake of crises and natural disasters that could occur around the world, United Airlines officials said the airline is continually willing to step up to do good by providing essential resources and relief to communities that are greatly affected — having done so in the past by shipping the COVID-19 vaccine and baby formula.

United’s efforts are just some of the ways Jerseyans have been working to help Puerto Rico.

U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) led a bicameral letter to congressional leadership requesting emergency funding for Puerto Rico, with a focus on Puerto Rico’s Medicaid program, to ensure that those impacted by Hurricane Fiona will have access to the health coverage they need.

“It is more imperative than ever that the residents of Puerto Rico are assured continued access to Medicaid coverage and services,” Menendez and the lawmakers wrote.

“Any new barriers to Puerto Ricans receiving medical assistance exacerbate an already unstable situation stemming from years of economic downturn, the COVID-19 pandemic, natural disasters and a painful debt-restructuring process that continues to leave the island with tens of billions of dollars of debt.”

Earlier last month, Gov. Phil Murphy announced two waves of first responders, each including 74 New Jersey state troopers and one civilian medical doctor, will travel to the island to support the Puerto Rico Police Bureau.