U.S. Puerto Rican poverty started wit...

U.S. Puerto Rican poverty started with the US invasion of P.R.

Posted in the Puerto Rico Forum


Bayamon, Puerto Rico

#1 Jun 7, 2011
The poverty among Puerto Ricans is largely rooted in the low-wage manufacturing jobs needed by Puerto Ricans.

Many moved to New York City in great numbers during the post-World War II years -- many of them agricultural workers displaced by US laws in the island, economists and researchers who have studied Puerto Ricans say.

Bayamon, Puerto Rico

#2 Jun 7, 2011
But for many, that kind of employment was short-lived because manufacturing (in New York) had begun its steep decline in the 1950's.

Bayamon, Puerto Rico

#3 Jun 7, 2011
In the 1970's and 80's, there was a breakdown of families, an increase of single-mother families, high unemployment.

First indicators of high poverty.

Bayamon, Puerto Rico

#4 Jun 7, 2011
Many believe that the poverty was compounded by the Puerto Rican experience with welfare. Arriving as American citizens, Puerto Ricans were entitled to the social services denied to many new immigrants. Among single mothers with young children, who often found welfare more attractive than a low-paying job with no benefits, public assistance kept many from job experience or started a cycle of poverty, sociologists say.

Opa Locka, FL

#5 Jul 29, 2011
Good point Jorge. Look at this: According to the United Nations educational per capita census data, Puerto and Venezuela are the most educated countries in the world. Pakistan, for example, average education is 5th grade. In contrast, as an average, the Puerto Rican minimum academic years per capita (school years) is about 14 years. Venezuela is 14 years. United States is 12 years. As an average, the Puerto Rican has a minimum education of 2 extra years post high school ( what we call Jr college). Most Puerto Ricans have as minimum education, Jr. College. So, in macroeconomics terms , the island has the most educated workforce in the world. Korea, 20 years ago, was the most educated workforce in the world, and as they created human resources infrastructure, their economy went up. However, Korea had the most graduate school level educated workforce in the world, with the highest amount of Master Degree in the world. Puerto Rico needs industrial incentives to attract manufacturing plants, etc, something like a Japan of the Caribbean. For that you need a good government to create the incentives and people need to get even higher education just like Korea did!

Since: Aug 11

Scottsdale, AZ

#6 Aug 2, 2011
"Operation Bootstrap" was enacted in Puerto Rico to create employment and combat poverty, and shift the island's economy away from farming to manufacturing.
The population had reached critical levels and forced Birth Control was a common practice.

Many gringos came to Puerto Rico and made millions because of the preferential treatment that this program offered. Factories were set up to make undergarments and similar clothing along with other items that could be easily and cheaply manufactured.
Many of these factory owners paid no Federal Income Tax, which was used to lure industry to the island.

I know that this economic program was started around 1948, and we arrived in San Juan in 1956. Those slums in La Perla and El Fanguito were there then, and they didn't look like they were recently built, my guess is that they were there for at least 20 years or more.

Getting back to the island's Birth Control program, it was a policy that hospitals would sterilize a woman after her third child during this time.

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