Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vázquez issued an executive order on Monday to prioritize ending the island’s epidemic of violence against women. Proactive measures to curb the crisis are long overdue. More than 150 women have been killed by their intimate partners since 2010, I reported for GEN in June. The U.S. territory is also dealing with an uptick in missing girls and women and murders of transgender women.
Advocates view the order as step in the right direction, and promised to continue holding Vázquez accountable as new protocols are implemented. “There were a lot of promises in her speech,” a spokesperson for Taller Salud, a local feminist organization, told me. “It will take us time to see if these measures will be put into practice.”