September 11, 2012
Contact: Nelly Robles, Communications Associate
Jacqueline Bado, Communications Intern
(202) 434- 8070
Hispanic State Legislators Urge Federal Funding to Combat Drug Violence in Puerto Rico
Washington, DC – Today, the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators, an organization representing the interests and advocating on behalf of nearly 350 Hispanic state legislators nationwide, announced that it had approved a resolution by Senator Luz Arce Ferrér (PR) advocating on behalf of expanded funding to combat drug related crime.
It is estimated that 80 percent of the murders committed in Puerto Rico are directly linked to drug trafficking. The escalation in drug violence is attributed to expanded law enforcement in the southwestern United States, which in turn has resulted in a redirection of some trafficking operations through the Caribbean, mainly through Puerto Rico.
“Too many lives are being lost and we need to put an end to the lawlessness”, said Sen. Luz Arce Ferrér (PR). “This is not just a Puerto Rican problem, it is a national problem. If Puerto Rico is the new front line on drug trafficking, then federal law enforcement funding should reflect this reality.”
“Stemming drug violence is a law enforcement priority, especially when it spills on the streets and takes innocent lives,” said Rep. Minnie Gonzalez, President of NHCSL. “Yes, we need law enforcement funding, but we also need greater investments in education and economic development to help shape a different life path for those young men and women. We also need to understand that combating addiction requires health care solutions, not just incarceration.”
For more information visit www.nhcsl.org.