The climate crisis is increasingly forcing people to flee their homes, whether internally or across state borders. However, existing international and domestic law does not provide sufficient protection for those forcibly displaced by extreme weather events. In 2021, the Biden administration issued an executive order and subsequently a report on the impact of climate change on migration, which marked a first step in federal policy toward recognition of the nexus between climate change and displacement. At the local level, Connecticut has already become a destination for climate-displaced people. For instance, after Hurricane Maria landed in Puerto Rico in 2017, approximately 13,000 Puerto Ricans came to the state. Since then, local service organizations have led efforts to help the community relocate after the disaster. Nearly six years after Maria, this Article provides the first ethnography of Puerto Rican women who relocated in Connecticut in the aftermath of the hurricane, discussing the ways in which federal law and policy have failed to meet the needs of Puerto Ricans and other climate-displaced people.
Camila Bustos at al., Climate Migration and Displacement: A Case Study of Puerto Rican Women in Connecticut, 55 Conn. L. Rev. 781 (2023), https://digitalcommons.pace.edu/lawfaculty/1252/.