The 2021 legislative session began January 20th. Virtual session opens up possibilities for advocates like you to participate in hearings from anywhere in the state, and we want your voice to be heard. Join us as we call for important policy changes to protect civil rights and create a better future for Hawaiʻi.

SMART JUSTICE – It’s time to dismantle our system of mass incarceration that tears families apart and makes us less safe. This session, we will be asking lawmakers to hold the Public Safety Department accountable for its failure to provide comprehensive reentry planning services, which it is required to do by law. We will demand a moratorium on plans for a costly new jail, and ask lawmakers to consider ways to address public health matters like substance use that do not involve putting people behind bars.

REIMAGINING POLICING – Hawai‘i is not insulated from the systemic racism in policing that has exploded into the national consciousness on the continent, particularly as it impacts Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, and Black communities. This session we will ask lawmakers to create new ways to allow victims of police brutality to hold officers accountable. We will support demilitarizing law enforcement and increasing transparency in arrests and prosecution.

DECRIMINALIZING POVERTY – For those experiencing houselessness, the simple act of resting your head at night is punished with hefty fines and even criminal penalties. Jails and prisons are epicenters of the largest COVID-19 clusters in Hawaiʻi, and many people are incarcerated simply because they cannot afford cash bail. There is a better way. This session, we will push to reform our cash bail system. We will oppose any funding cuts to social services, which are crucial in getting families through this economic crisis, and we will support the decriminalization of quality-of-life offenses.

IMPORTANT DATES

February 6th                Virtual Advocacy Training, register here.

March 15th – 19th        ACLU of Hawaiʻi Week of Action

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