The central demand of protesters in Puerto Rico, who for weeks have taken to the streets calling on the island’s governor to resign, was met late Wednesday night, when Ricardo Rosselló announced he would leave office by Aug. 2. Many observers thought islanders had become so accustomed to corruption among the political class that the scandal, sparked by the leak of online chat logs between Rosselló and his supporters, would blow over.
That was not the case. The divulgence of the misogynistic and homophobic messages, in which Rosselló and colleagues mocked rivals and ordinary Puerto Ricans all while apparently pillaging public coffers, proved to be the straw that broke the camel’s back.
Former-Indypendent reporter Erin Sheridan, who now runs the Puerto Rican documentary project “People Live Here,” was on the streets for the uprising, which comes amid a continuing debt crisis and drawn-out efforts to rebuild following 2017’s Hurricane Maria. She sends us these photographs.
Meanwhile, attention has turned to Rosselló’s expected replacement, Justice Secretary Wanda Vázquez. Vázquez, the island’s chief law enforcement officer, is accused of interfering in corruption investigations involving hurricane relief and her political allies. Protesters calling for her to resign as well.
You’ll find The Indy’s past coverage of Puerto Rico at the bottom of this article.
All photos by Erin Sheridan. More here.