Puerto Rican families face uncertain future with looming FEMA deadline

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Puerto Rico after hurricane_1522186037906.jpg.jpg

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)–  Another looming FEMA deadline for Puerto Rican families receiving housing assistance has them living in uncertainty.

FEMA has extended the housing deadline to May 14 with an eligibility to review on April 20. FEMA stated, “The extension applies to those who meet eligibility requirements and are already participating in the TSA program. However, this does not mean that all survivors currently in TSA housing will be extended until this date due to eligibility criteria.”

“So what am I going to do about my son and daughter?” she asked.

Plaza said she doesn’t have a home to go back to in Puerto Rico. “We come here from Puerto Rico. I lost everything. My house no working.”

Frances Matos brought her brother here from Puerto Rico to get the medical care. She says it’s difficult to get medical help on the island. Frances Matos said, “For medical, it is so bad. So bad.”Junta has helped over 900 people from Puerto Rico and that number keeps climbing.Walk-ins meet with FEMA to sign up in hopes of getting housing assistance. The organization is collecting food and clothing donations.Celina Fernandez-Ayala said, “If they are kicked out of their hotels it’s where am I going to put my kids? Where are they going to go to school? And the last thing children need is instability.”Jessica Bello’s five family members lost everything on the island. Bello said, “We are trying to look for funds everywhere we can. We go to the Salvation Army. It’s like everywhere we go they are like we ran out of funds.” She said not enough is being done to help evacuees.Bello added, “They feel like they were left behind because there are no funds for them to run to.” Junta fears New Haven could see more homelessness when the FEMA housing assistance expires.”We don’t want families on the street. We don’t want children on the street. there’s also concerns with the DCF and it’s not that the parents aren’t capable of taking care of their children it just has to do with the housing circumstances,” Celina Fernandez-Ayala said.

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