Convention Report for the Hawaiian Affairs Caucus
In the face of the disasters experienced by our Waimanalo, Kauai and Hawai‘i ohana these past few months, we are reminded of the words of an ancient mele, “Pu‘uonioni”, that says, “Mālama I Ke Kanaka, A He Pua Lahaʻole” (“Take care of your people, for they are the rarest of flowers.”) The Hawaiian Affairs Caucus cares about these communities and applauds their strength and resilience.
Congratulations to the Hawai‘i County Committee for hosting this year’s convention. Your work in the face of adversity is commendable and appreciated. Congratulations and mahalo also to the DPH leadership and staff and the SCC Convention Co-Chairs and Committee for your diligence in bringing us a great convention.
In line with its mission, the Hawaiian Affairs Caucus invites everyone to attend its educational forum, titled, “Traditional and Customary Native Hawaiian Practices” featuring the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation and Mr. Joshua Lanakila Mangauil, cultural practitioner and Hawai‘i island resident. Join us on Friday, May 25, 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. at the Hilton Waikoloa.
The Hawaiian Affairs Caucus supports and promotes the cultural values of aloha, mālama ‘āina, ho‘okipa, kuleana and pono, in alignment with the values of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i. We seek to address issues of self-determination responsibilities and rights, protection of Hawaiian cultural practices and sacred sites, pono economic development, distribution of wealth to those segments of society most in need, protection of Hawai‘i’s natural resources (on the ‘āina and in the kai), housing, health, education, and accountability of public servants identified as Democrats to the mission and goals of the Democratic Party of Hawaii.
Since the last convention, we have conducted monthly meetings of the Executive Committee and quarterly meetings of our membership; tracked, testified and advocated for over 100 bills in the 2017 and 2018 legislative sessions, got the National Platform amended to include a statement on Native Hawaiians, testified at Office of Hawaiian Affairs meetings, and served on various SCC Committees. We also periodically sponsored educational forums and cultural outings. Our focus has primarily been on bills concerning appropriations for Native Hawaiian programs, housing, education, health and the environment.
As elections approach, we will host candidate forums, especially for those running for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs; invite candidates for all political offices to share their platform and post to our website; and encourage voter turnout.
In closing, we wish to honor Senator Daniel Akaka and send our sincerest condolences to aunty Millie and their family. Moe me ka maluhia lani, Uncle Danny.