In August 2022, the ACLU of Hawaiʻi sent the following Policy Memo to all Gubernatorial Candidates in the 2022 Primary Election:


The ACLU of Hawaiʻi calls upon the next Hawaiʻi Governor to embrace clemency and the power of redemption.  This is a historic opportunity for the Governor to use their executive powers in transformative ways. By statute, “Aloha" is acknowledged as the “essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence.” Our next Governor “on behalf of the people and in fulfillment of their responsibilities, obligations and service to the people” has the power to “give consideration to the Aloha Spirit’.” 

Please find attached a memo entitled Embracing Categorical Clemency.  This memo provides guidance for the next Hawai’i Governor, outlining opportunities for categorical clemency based on criminal justice data specific to Hawai’i.

Clemency grants, paired with supportive services for people who receive them, such as reentry planning or record clearing processes known as “Clean Slate”, facilitates long-term success. In turn, this act of Aloha provides a pathway to redemption that allows individuals who have learned from their mistakes to return to their ‘ohana (families) and communities instead of languishing in prisons at taxpayer expense.

We welcome working with you in the future to build safe, healthy, thriving and just communities in Hawai’i!


ACLU of Hawaiʻi