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Health Equity And Human Rights

Write a report on nature made disaster men made crisis and human rights in Puerto Rico.

Sample Answer

Year, 2017, when hurricane Maria struck the shores of Puerto Rico, most of the citizens of this land were not aware of the fact that what kind of misery it is bringing in for them. The impact was devastating. It destroyed many small and big ecosystems that were present in the area. Natives of Puerto Rico faced double jeopardy because hurricane Maria robbed all most of the men made structures alongside the natural habitats that were an integral part of their life.  It is true that the impacts of Hurricanes are devastating, however, in the case of Puerto Rico, the impact of this hurricane was a big jolt (Mendez, 2018). Ideally, we search for crisis management systems and other support mechanisms in the case of nature made a disaster. Countries like Japan have set a rule book for us in this regard (Kingston, 2012). However, the things are different in Puerto Rico. This is an economy which is trying hard to wake up from the slumber of a decade-long recession. The rate of unemployment is rising high and touching the levels of 12.5 (Arelis RHernandez, 2018). In a closely guarded place like Puerto Rico, this number is alarmingly high and it can become a reason behind severe social imbalances where youth can take shelter in criminal activities and add more problems into the system. The feeble economy and a destroyed eco-system together can bring in a great impact on the social fabric of any given place. A human rights index often takes care of certain places on this merit as well. The implementation of the human rights becomes important in order to avoid an increase in criminal behavior among the people.

The human right index promoted by the UN authorities says that food, clothing, and shelter is a basic human right for any person living under any sovereign of the civilized world. In the case of Puerto Rico, word civilized has a deeper meaning because mainstream society changed the way of the living for local people under the same exercise of making them civilized (Flores, 2009). For a better understanding, we can check the etymology of the word "Puerto Rico." It is a Spanish term that reads "Rich land." Great traveler Christopher Columbus identified the worth of this land for its natural resources in the fifteenth century (Duany, 2017). This place faced the sweet bitter consequences of being a country rich in the natural resources. Most of the acts of business done on this land were not self-sustaining in nature. After the death of their life cycles, those businesses migrated and left this country to survive with the help of tourism as an industry (Ramos, 2010).

In the year 2006, the biggest recession of the 21st century enveloped the world. It lasted for two years, most of the other countries survived from this jolt but the things came at a standstill in Puerto Rico. The public debt and the numbers of the unemployment never came down (Slavin, 2018). The latest onslaught of the Hurricane Maria destroyed the electrical grid of the country and left this country in a big trouble for energy to resume the basic life and meet the basic necessities of life. The shortage of electricity caused a major migration of 200,000 people to the nearby city of Florida (Elliott, 2018). This migration and the current deficit of basic living standards forced many thinkers to rethink about the definition of the human rights. In the current essay we are trying to explore this new definition with the help of the case of Puerto Rico and trying to sum up the rescue efforts and their worth for the interest of the scholars of human rights and other fraternity members working in the direction to judge the impacts of a natural calamity to any given place.

This essay is an attempt to redefine some of the terms written in Human right books from the perspective of Puerto Rico. Apart from it, we will also keep a check on some advocacy actions taken in this direction and what can be the right balances to bring out the best impacts of these advocacy actions. The case of Puerto

Tarps instead of shelters forced the advocacy rights to make an entry

In the year 2017, with the arrival of Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico met with an environmental crisis. However, within the next few days this environmental crisis turned out to become a human rights disaster (Fumes, 2017). Thousands of people were spending nights in open skies and facing the woes of bad weather. There was a shortage of tarps. It may happen for initial few days because the efforts of rescue may take their own time to reach the remote areas of the place. However, soon everybody realized that it was happening due to a lack of public policy. It was the indirect result of a bad public policy that forced the advocacy rights to make an entry into the scene (Aquino, 2018).

Annette Martinez, director of the Caribbean Institute for Human Rights became a face of reforms and advocacy rights when he started 30 self-help groups to restore the things in the island with the help of a series of the actions. Clean water for the consumption and the restoration of the education facilities for the kids were the primary agenda for these community groups (Harmon, 2018). Prior to the actions of this group, the public health scenario was pitiful in Puerto Rico. Those who were less affected by the hurricane and having enough resources started using generators to make electricity. The environment of Puerto Rico is very sensitive to this excessive use of fossil fuels. In the absence of any regulations, another environmental hazard is all set to blast the eco-system of this land (Bittel, 2018).

Most of the advocacy right activist worked upon the question where they tried to find out the reason behind this delay in the rescue programs. They find an incomplete answer in the form of austerity in the policies connected to the public debts. Puerto Rico is under severe public debts, the long recession decreased the productivity of the local economy (Jackson, 2018). The public debt is on a rise. This is where the things have changed, according to the policy drafts, a place incurring public debts on a regular basis don't deserve an aggressive policy for the health. The formula of the input and put output ratios can be taken into an account here. Since the output of Puerto Rico was less, it was bound to receive rescue related support at a slower pace (Weir, 2018).

The lens of human rights has a different opinion about it; it says that being a human is the only qualification to receive the help under a disaster like condition. The documentation of the human rights also identifies this help in two heads. The first head is of “interim relief” and the second head is of “permanent measures” to restore the economy and the living standards of the local people (Rios, 2018). Most of the advocacy rights experts believed that in the case of Puerto Rico, interim relief was sent to the land; however, the “permanent measures” are out of the sight. A tarp is an interim relief in the place of a shelter. However, a tarp has become a final settlement for the citizens of Puerto Rico (Collinson, 2018).

The case of Puerto Rico has converted some minor issues into the major issues. One such issue is the use of the generators. Most of these generators cause a lot of noise and air pollution. It is true that they help certain individuals in getting a proper sleep, however, the same generators became a nightmare for the others living in the tarps because the noise coming out of these generators is not allowing them to have a sleep during the night. As a human right activist, we might have heard phrases like "right against hunger," "right to sanitation," "right to health" etc. However, in the case of Puerto Rico "right to electricity" and "right to sleep" has emerged as a serious issue (Lindsay, 2018).

The Tangents Of The Problem That Are Becoming Major Issues
Recently on the date of 20th September when people in Puerto Rico were paying the homages to the victims of the Hurricane Maria, they felt a shock from the side of president Trump. President of USA denied the number of the deaths that took place during the fateful incidence (Thomas, 2018). He said that it was an inflated number. This latest announcement confirms the doubts of the advocacy rights champions who were expressing concerns over the step-motherly treatments of the government towards the installation of the permanent measures to support the human rights of these people that are "living on the edge."

Many advocacy right experts believe that Puerto Rico is not receiving enough substantial support at a steady pace from the government because they lack proper representation in Washington D.C. They are very right in this assessment. Even after one-year authorities are skeptical about the numbers of the people that died (Santana, 2018). Most of the advocacy rights experts are also concerned about the fact that this state does not have a proper representation in the books of the planning as well. Right now this place needs a long-term rehabilitation plan for the citizen. It is their right because they are following a certain citizenship status. Their contribution to the main frame of the economy may be slightly low; however, on the merits of the human rights, they deserve a better and consistent deal (Eck, 2018).

Many advocacy rights champions reacted sharply to the observations of President Trump. Even after one year, it there is a gap between the numbers of official victims and real victims of the Hurricane Maria then it clearly shows a policy paralysis. It shows that something somewhere is wrong and the authorities are not able to quantify the impact of the devastation done by the hurricane Maria. In order to increase this participation in the books of Washington D.C. Many advocacy rights champions are demanding for two agendas, first, they want the status of being the 51st state in the USA. They are also planning to call back the migrants of the land and participate in the electoral process which is going to take place in the forthcoming month of November. They believe that this exercise will help them in securing a better representation in Washington DC and other forums.

The seasons of cyclones are knocking the doors of Puerto Rico once again. Most of the residents that have restored their life after some herculean efforts are worried because they are not aware that what this new season of storms has in store for them. On the scale of the human rights, the case of Puerto Rico leaves a trail of messages that can be learned. It gives us a message to rethink about the rights of being a human all over again. On the index of humanity they are not lesser citizens, it was a natural calamity that destroyed them, however, it was a human oversight of the policy paralysis that forced them to face the misery of living under inhuman conditions.

The basic principles of the human right indicate that all humans are equal and they deserve a basic level of living standards all the time. It is the responsibility of the state to quantify the damage done by a natural disaster and come up with some short term and long term plans for the relief and rehabilitation. It was a long battle that the champions of advocacy rights fought in Puerto Rico. It is not yet over, they have a battle ahead of them, the current polling in November can only increase their representation, however, and the impacts of representation will take their own bitter time to reach to the people.

The residents of Puerto Rico certainly deserve a better deal from the government sector and the society largely. The human rights also describe some duties for the powerful segments of the society where they should extend the hands and support some unfortunate victims. The case of Puerto Rico sets an example in front of us where we can learn a few things about re-drafting the human rights issues in a new cosmopolitan world. This time the emphasis should be more on the marginalized world where due to some unfortunate circumstances the citizens are not able to perform better and contribute their bit in the mainstream economics.

Under a recent development, the people of Puerto Rico are joining forces to establish themselves as a majority that has the power to bring in some major changes on the political front. In the future it will be interesting to see what will this joining of the forces will help them in getting a better deal in the terms of human rights and rehabilitation programs that they deserve from the corresponding local authorities and the nation that gave them the status of being a citizen. The outcome of the future elections in the region will also give us an insight related to the status of human rights in the society. The current definition of the human right says that every human enjoys certain rights once he is born as a human. However, the output of the elections in the Puerto Rico and their aftermath will give us an idea that how democracy and the voices in the democracy can bring in a difference in the distribution of the human rights.

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