Members of Hartford’s Puerto Rican community held a rally and a candlelight vigil Friday night in front of the hotel where dozens of hurricane evacuees from the island have been living since Hurricane Maria.
Watch scenes from the vigil below:
Several of the Puerto Rican families at the hotel could have to move out later this week after FEMA declared them ineligible for federal housing assistance. But many don’t have a place to go.
Hurricane evacuee Carmen Cotto said many of the families at the hotel came from areas of the island where the hurricane’s damage was the most severe.
“Many of us feel very alone,” Cotto said. “Many of us feel like no one is listening. Many of us are feeling like we’re nothing, because that’s what the government is making us feel.”
As of Sunday, Cotto said she had FEMA’s permission to stay longer, but the hotel had not yet been informed.
State officials say over 900 Puerto Rican families in Connecticut have registered with FEMA after the hurricane.