Oxfam on Tuesday condemned the U.S. government’s “slow and inadequate response” to hurricane devastation on Puerto Rico, ahead of President Donald Trump’s trip to the island and amid his attacks on San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz.
“The US has more than enough resources to mobilize an emergency response but has failed to do so in a swift and robust manner,” Abby Maxman, the president of Oxfam America, said in a statement. “We are outraged at the slow and inadequate response the US Government has mounted in Puerto Rico.”
Maxman said the international aid nonprofit will intervene in the Hurricane Maria recovery effort on Puerto Rico, despite “rarely” responding to “humanitarian emergencies in the US and other wealthy countries.”
“We’re hearing excuses and criticism from the administration instead of a cohesive and compassionate response,” she said. “As the situation in Puerto Rico worsens and the federal government’s response continues to falter, Oxfam has decided to step in to lend our expertise in dealing with some of the world’s most catastrophic disasters.”
According to the statement, Oxfam will “join forces with Puerto Rican leaders to appeal to Congress and other federal agencies in Washington to dedicate resources to the response and remove barriers that are keeping aid out.”
The nonprofit said it has also sent its own team to Puerto Rico to assess its response.