Hawaii State House
Hawaii State House
Congress: Let all children of U.S. military service members reunite with their families
I’m Jenifer Bass, a U.S. Navy Veteran, who served for 10 years mostly in the Asia-Pacific region. It was due to my travel between ports in countries like Japan and Thailand, that I first encountered Amerasian children (and descendants) of U.S. sailors and military contractors previously stationed overseas. In the Philippines alone, more than 52,000-plus children were left behind after the U.S. Navy withdrew the last of its military personnel in 1992. Right now, the U.S. government won’t recognize them as U.S. citizens, despite having been born to an American parent. Many Amerasians are caught in a no-man’s land of discrimination and poverty -- most left behind by U.S. sailors who are unaware that they’ve fathered children overseas. My friend John Haines is one of these sailors. In 2011, John discovered he was the father of a half-Filipino daughter, Jannette. He attempted to reunite with her through the American Homecoming Act -- but was frustrated to learn that the Act did not apply to Filipino children of U.S. Service members. Today, all John wants is to be reunited with his daughter and grandchildren. He, like so many other veterans are living with a “hole in their hearts” as they search for ways to reunite with their children. There is hope. The Uniting Families Act of 2016 creates a specialized visa allowing military veterans and eligible civilian contractors to sponsor their children and grandchildren for U.S. citizenship. Blood relationship must be proven by DNA test and the total number of visas granted will be capped at 5,000 each year. The issue takes on more urgency as so many of our veterans from our wars in Southeast Asia are getting older and dying each day -- without the chance to reconnect with their own children. John’s daughter Jannette has already undertaken the DNA testing process, conclusively proving her relationship to her American father. All she’s waiting for is the opportunity to permanently reunite with her dad. You can find them in the Amerasian group pages on Facebook. Search angel services are available to both sides.There is a PBS documentary called "Left by the Ship" (2010), the video above, documenting everyday life and their personal struggles as a Filipino Amerasian on the never ending search for identity and their struggle to connect to their American military fathers, to bridge the gap between the past and the present. Please sign this petition to tell Congress that these families cannot wait another day. Pass the Uniting Families Act of 2016 now!
Remove the penalty that prevents people with disabilities from marrying!
When we think of marriage equality, we think about the ongoing fight LGBT couples face, but another minority group must deal with the stark reality that they are better off living in long-term committed relationships, without marriage. Like LGBT couples, these couples are denied the right to over 1,100 rights afforded to married couples. They have been denied access into their loved ones hospital rooms, faced family disputes over wills and have been denied spousal benefits from their partners workplace or the government in the event of their partners death. These are people with disabilities. Many people rely on the government for medical and financial assistance. Without medical insurance they would have no way to live independently. They would be forced into nursing homes (some already are), which would cost the government significantly more than getting Medicare and/or Medicaid does. At the same time, this assistance comes with a price. The government expects married couples to share income and that affects any assistance the couple receives. For many, their spouse makes too much (even if they make meager SSDI payments). This cuts into the healthcare services these couples receive. For some, their able-bodied partners make too much to allow them to qualify for medical assistance, if married, but not enough to pay out of pocket for costly medical equipment, medicine, or any other needs the disabled partner has. Add in the fact that even when a person with a disability can work, the opportunity for quality medical insurance is hard to find, due to their pre-existing condition and you will understand why many couples with disabilities are forced to live in domestic partnerships. Also, if two people with disabilities marry and they are on SSI or SSDI, their payments are CUT significantly, making it hard for them to maintain independence and afford their own food, shelter, clothing or other necessities. The time to stand up is now!! Let your Senators and Representatives know you want to remove the income caps placed on individuals with disabilities, so they can keep the government assistance and still be able to get married. Every loving couple deserves the right to marry. No one should have to choose between their wheelchair and their love, their therapy and their love, their medication and their love, their ability to eat or have a roof over their head and their love!! Those are not choices!! Help make it possible for those with disabilities to share their love without being penalized!Join our fight for marriage equality for people with disabilities:https://www.facebook.com/MarriageEqualityForPeopleWithDisabilities
#ProgressiveDisruption by the States
What happened to make this country the focus of judgment, laughter, and fear from the rest of the world? The industrialized world outside of the United States enjoys a better quality of life and general happiness that most of us can only imagine. First class education, comprehensive health care, clean food/water/air and an overall better relationship with their fellow citizens. And as a country, we have higher mortality rates at younger ages, poorer health, and an impoverished population who can't learn new skills without going deeper into debt. As much as we like to blame Donald Trump for our national problems; these problems were here before him, and they will still be here if Trump is removed from office tomorrow. We have a political system that centralizes power to a consolidated political center in Washington, DC and an economic center in New York City. Our Electoral System will isolate the power to determine the direction of our political system to a very small, easily manipulated portion of the electorate in strategic location. Worst of all, we have a large portion of the population who will empower a mentally unstable man to the highest office in the world; just so they can say “We Won”. This group is constantly complaining about a simple world with plentiful jobs in their communities that are extinct or never really existed. And now, they have the nerve to complain about losing the federal government programs they benefitted from and voted against. It's time we said “ENOUGH” and have Progressive States and Communities band together and share resources and ideas to provide a better quality of life for its people, that the Trump Administration wants to take away. And furthermore, we need to ensure that we only support States and Communities who will change their policies for its people. We can no longer provide assistance to Red States, just so they can abuse and neglect their citizens for business interests. For the future of this nation, we need to explore every legal method possible to protect the people from an extremely dangerous President Trump. A Values Based Alliance of the States (VBAS) is one way of resisting this new reality of government, and the dangerous changes that we all know are inevitable. I understand that the constitution will not allow us to directly stop this monstrosity, but it will allows us to devalue it. A VBAS of certain states with similar values and policy preferences can and will use its population centers and economic influence to co-op, share resources, and implement policies with other co-opted states, while not having to depend on or engage the federal government. Examples: There are certain states with a majority of people that believe single payer healthcare system (CA, MA, VT, NY, WA, OR, IL, HI.). If those states passed laws to provide single payer health care for it’s people, a Single Payer Healthcare VBAS organization of those states can share resources to improve efficiencies, expand medical training/education amongst the co-opted states, negotiate pharmaceutical/treatment, amend needed tax policies and petition the US Government. This would also force neighboring states to decide if they want to change their internal policies to provide single payer, so they can join the Health Care VBAS. A resident of Indiana might ask his state to join the VBAS, because he could literally see his next door neigbor in Illinois fully covered, and using a Doctor that just came back from his training at a medical school in California. Although the VBAS states can not legally sign the Paris accords, they can change their internal policies to abide by its recommendations. There could be an environmental protection VBAS, where the states involved agree to abide by the Paris accords, improve safety protocols within its states, take climate change seriously, and provide economic preference to states and nations that do the same. CA, OR, NY, MA, VT, WA HI, and NV could agree to be a preferred customer of states or nations that voluntarily reduces its carbon emissions and address climate change, instead of LA or TX, which most likely will not. Other issues could include minimum wage, education, trade agreements, gun control and virtually every policy not adjudicated solely to the federal government. As more VBASes are organized and more states agree to join them, Donald Trump and the ignorance of future presidents become less and less relevant. Please sign this petition and pass it on to as many people as possible.
Pass Safe Harbor & End Demand for Prostitution Laws in Hawaii
Currently, Hawaii has no protocol to legally detain juveniles rescued from prostitution without criminalizing them. The Pacific Alliance to Stop Slavery (PASS) is urging the Hawaii State Legislature to pass legislation to help child trafficking victims to proper rehabilitative and healing services rather than to incarceration. PASS is also urging the legislature to pass an End Demand Bill (SB192/HB1066 and SB194) which seek to increase penalties for patrons of prostitution/sex-trafficking, commonly referred to as “johns.” The existing grade of offense for johns is a petty misdemeanor, equivalent to the fine of remaining in a public park after hours. The penalty for the offense of fueling prostitution/sex-trafficking, by providing the demand, has not been updated in Hawaii since the law was created in the early 70s. Please help Hawaii pass these bills because injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Help us stop the growth of child-trafficking in America. FACTS: Hawaii’s incarceration rate of juvenile girls exceed the national average. Of these offenses, about 35% are runaways. Hawaii has one of the highest rates of intrafamilial sexual abuse (or incest) and also has one of the highest attempted teen suicide rates in the nation. There are approximately 300 children reported missing in Hawaii per month. There are no law enforcement stats for child sex-trafficking because of the lack of a state sex-trafficking law. Earlier this year, Shared Hope International rated Hawaii second worst in the nation in protecting child victims of sex trafficking by law. // // // //
Impeach Hawaii's Governor David Ige, Dec. 2015
BE SURE TO SIGN PETITION 1 AND 2 https://www.change.org/p/hawaii-legislature-impeach-hawaii-s-governor-david-ige IMPEACH HAWAII GOVERNOR DAVID IGE- A betrayal of Hawaii's Trust! AMERICA- USA- HAWAII- SOVEREIGN KINGDOM HAWAII- SHARE- SHARE- PLEASE SHARE!! Follow on Twitter: @impeachige www.twitter.com/impeachige Like on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/impeachige #IMPEACHIGE #IMPEACHGOVERNORIGE #IMPEACHAWAIIGOVERNORIGE #NOIGEINHAWAII #BYEBYEGOVERNORIGE #IGEGOHOME #GOBACKTOJAPANIGE Hawaii at a critical time of decisions, we can't afford to waste our time with incompetent politicians. He Abused his Power by sending DLNR to arrest Native Hawaiians whom they exercise their Freedom of Speech, whom practice their own cultural beliefs. GOVERNOR IS A BETRAYAL OF OUR TRUST. He fails at helping our Homeless Veterans, and Citizens. He is a foreigner, NOT of this lands, NOT of our country. Send him, his family, and friends back home to Tokyo, JAPAN! The most recent impeachment of a state governor occurred on January 14, 2009, when the Illinois House of Representatives voted 117-1 to impeach Rod Blagojevich on corruption charges; he was subsequently removed from office and barred from holding future office by the Illinois Senate on January 29. It is time Hawaii, to IMPEACH Hawaii State Governor IGE. Sign the Petition and Share! Mahalo Hawaii. We going to set things straight for the people of Hawaii and for the USA. This is disheartening to see our own Hawaiian - Americans suffer in silence. Let's speak out now. And Petition to IMPEACH the Governer of Hawaii.
2011 Signatures to Pass Hawaii Anti Human-Trafficking Laws in 2011
With your help, we can pass much-needed state laws in Hawaii defining human-trafficking as a felony offense while recognizing victims. Hawaii is now 1 of 4 states lacking any local anti human-trafficking state laws. According to the Honolulu StarAdvertiser, federal agents report that Hawaii is also one of the handful of states with the worst child-trafficking problem. Whether the victim be a child or an adult, international or U.S. citizen, sex-trafficking should never be tolerated by ignoring the state's opportunity to address the crime on the local level. Sign this petition. United we can stop human-trafficking in Hawaii. Please pass HB141 SD1 (Labor-Trafficking) and HB240 SD1 (Promoting Prostitution). Please do not gut them in Conference!
Ban Donald Trump from entering the State of Hawaii
Hawaii, one of the most diverse and cultured states in the union, is home to thousands of immigrants and people of various faiths. Our demographic statistics speak for itself, as we continue to be the melting pot of culture and diversity. We have absolutely no room for hateful rhetoric no matter who it is from. We the people, are requesting that the Hawaii State Legislature and its Governor to pass legislation for Mr. Donald John Trump, a man known for his hateful rhetoric, to be barred from entering the State of Hawaii. WHEREAS, Hawaii is a very diverse and cultural state; and WHEREAS, Hawaii's population of diverse races, women, religions, disabled persons, prisoners of war; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has continued claims that Mexicans are drug dealers, criminals, and rapists; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has called for a ban on all Muslims entering the country; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has mocked the disabled; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has made offensive remarks on women; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has made offensive remarks on prisoners of war; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has made derogatory remarks on the Asian community at large; and WHEREAS, Mr. Trump has refused to condemn the Ku Klux Klan; now, therefore BE IT RESOLVED by the people of the State of Hawaii that we request the Hawaii State Legislature and Governor to ban Donald John Trump from entering the State of Hawaii; and BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that copies of this petition be distributed to members of the Hawaii State Legislature and Governor.
Save Lives: Require Spinal Muscular Atrophy Newborn Screening
August is Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) Awareness Month. Please join our efforts to require SMA newborn screening, and help end the deadly effects of SMA. About SMA: • SMA is the number one genetic killer of babies and children under the age of two.• SMA is a motor neuron disease like ALS.• SMA robs the ability to move, swallow, and eventually breathe. • One in 40 unknowingly carries the gene responsible for SMA.• When two carriers have a baby, there is a 25% chance the baby will have SMA, a 50% chance the baby will be a carrier, and a 25% chance the baby will be unaffected.• One in 10,000 babies is born with SMA. The FDA approved Spinraza as the first treatment for SMA on December 23, 2016. However, newborns continue to go untreated when they would receive the most benefit, as no states are performing SMA newborn screening. Newly diagnosed Type 1 SMA babies treated with Spinraza didn't lose their ability to move, swallow, and breathe, but instead gained strength. Some even crawled and took steps — steps away from the deadly effects of SMA. Newborn babies treated within the first two weeks never lost abilities to SMA, and developed as average babies do. They crawl, eat, stand, and walk. Only newborns with older SMA siblings have been treated this way, as their parents knew to screen for SMA. Every newborn needs to be screened for SMA, so babies born with SMA can develop just as babies without SMA do. For this to happen, SMA needs to be added to the Recommended Uniform Screening Panel (RUSP), states need to require SMA newborn screening, and funding needs to be provided for SMA newborn screening. The Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children (Committee) is scheduled to vote to add SMA to the RUSP at its February, 2018 meeting. Once the Committee votes favorably to add SMA to the RUSP, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will add SMA to the RUSP. This is an important step, as many states look to the RUSP when adding new conditions to screen for. This petition will be delivered to both the Committee, and the Secretary of HHS. States also need to require newborn screening, as the RUSP is only a recommendation, it does not mandate states to test for conditions. We will continue to pursue SMA newborn screening in every state, and this petition will help our efforts. Missouri is the only state to enact newborn screening legislation, and will begin screening for SMA in January of 2019. Federal and state funds are also needed to begin and continue SMA newborn screening. This petition will help us as we advocate for funding with the appropriate federal and state congressional members. Act Now: With an FDA-approved treatment, it is urgent we secure SMA newborn screening. Newborn babies treated within the first two weeks will have the best chance at progressing as they would without SMA. Every baby born with SMA should be afforded this life-saving treatment. Please sign our petition urging Committee to vote to add SMA to the RUSP, urging states to require SMA newborn screening, and urging federal and state congressional members to provide funding for SMA newborn screening.
Ban the sale of ivory within Hawaii
African and Asian elephants need your help and they need it now! Elephant numbers have dropped by 62% over the last decade, and they could be extinct by the end of the next decade. An estimated 100 African elephants are killed each day by poachers seeking ivory, meat and body parts, leaving only 400,000 remaining."As of 2016, there are still more African elephants being killed for ivory than are being born. . . elephant populations continue to decline.” In Hawaii 80% of the ivory sold is of illegal origin. A lot of it is freshly carved. There’s no question that this trade has been going on there for many years. Most ivory hacked from the faces of elephants by poachers ends up in China, where master carvers are standing by. The demand there is so high that ivory sells at roughly $1,000 per pound, allowing everyone who touches it along a trade route flowing from Africa to America to Asia to get a profit share, including groups that commit terrorist acts, intelligence officials have said. In order to save African and Asian elephants we need to stop this ongoing slaughter, reduce the demand for ivory and stop the sale of ivory that kills thousands of elephants. You can make a change by signing this petition, spreading awareness about this critical problem and help ban the sale of ivory. I went to Laos last summer and spent some time living on an elephant sanctuary. Spending so much time with elephants, I found that they are emotional, beautiful, kind and loving. They have a soul. They are no different from us. It’s not just a species facing extinction, it’s massive individual suffering. Please sign this petition and get everyone you know to sign it too!
Universal Single-Payer Health Care introduced as a bill in Hawaii in 2017
We the People of Hawaii see a need to lower the cost of and increase the quality of our health care. The best way to do that is to implement a state based Universal Single-Payer Health Care Plan based on the Illinois Single-Payer Plan of 2011, with influence from John Marty's book on Single Payer Health Care. A state based single-payer plan will result consolidating all insurance providers into one 'plan,' in Hawaii, including Workers Comp companies. This will result in significant savings for employers and at the same time, it improves reimbursement for providers and improves the quality of care and availability of care for all state residents. We are asking for as many Hawaii State representatives and senators as possible to implement the HHA bill passed in 2009; the Hawaii Health Agency is a bill passed in 2009 which directed the new agency, HHA, to create a Universal Single-Payer plan in Hawaii. Currently, 17 other states have similar bills in consideration in 2017. To see a complete list visit the website: www.healthcare-now.org Please review this links for a detailed example of what our own bill could look like: The Montana Plan: http://mnhealthplan.org/ The Colorado Plan www.coloradocare.org The Illinios Plan http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/fulltext.asp?DocName=&SessionId=84&GA=97&DocTypeId=HB&DocNum=311&GAID=11&LegID=56093&SpecSess=&Session= Facts are your Friends if you support Single-Payer: http://fixithealthcare.com/ The purpose of this petition is to show how much support Universal Single-Payer Health Care has in Hawaii. Lets find as many members of our legislature as possible to introduce a bill. With a single-payer bill introduced, we will be able to rally public support for both fixing health care. Please add your name and let's use People Power to "drain the swamp" of corporate bureaucracy, as our Commander in Chief says. Said. Aloha! Update: This is the memo which Alan Burdick wrote to the Hawaii Democratic Party, in support of asking the HDP to make Single Payer a legislative priority in 2017: Memorandum to the Legislative Committee of the Democratic Party of HawaiiRequesting Addition to the Agenda of Legislative Priorities an Action Plan forAdoption of Universal Health Care at the Hawaii State Level Short Title – Calling for the Hawaii Health Authority to adopt an action plan for legislation to create a Hawaii state-level universal healthcare system. Specific Request and Proposal: We ask that the Legislature enact a bill to:Direct the Hawaii Health Authority (HHA) to update its prior reports and proposals of December 2011, January 2013, and December 2014, and prepare an action plan to adopt a unified state-level system of universal health care to be implemented as soon as practicable. The plan would include proposed statutory language to the extent practicable. The plan would also outline regulations to be adopted. (The HHA is the state entity established under HRS Chapter 322H in 2009 to study and recommend action on healthcare policy for the State. Its work is not done and it is essential to support its mission.) 2. The action plan would include, but would not be limited to a feasibility study that would address all relevant financial and legal issues, including funding streams, cost-control measures for physicians, hospitals, and other medical providers, and for pharmaceuticals, and address maintaining and improving outcomes in all aspects of health, including physical and mental health, and dental and vision services, and it would address, as much as practical, the anticipated reductions in Federal funding and support for Medicaid, Medicare, and other Federally-supported healthcare systems and programs. HRS §322H-2(b) specifically anticipates that the Authority will create such a plan; 3. The HHA would send its action plan to the Legislature by mid-December 2017, for adoption as soon as is reasonably practical; 4. The Legislature would appropriate a sum adequate to ensure that HHA may complete the action plan, including a thorough feasibility study; this appropriation would be for staff and other expenses of the HHA for use in the task. Rationale – The Problems to be Addressed:Health care is a human right. Currently, health care delivery in the United States is provided, if at all, by a patchwork of systems and programs: Private insurance as regulated by Obamacare and ERISA; Medicare; Medicaid; medical services under the Department of Veterans’ Affairs; Planned Parenthood; CHIP; welfare agencies; and other avenues. The United States is unfortunately “Exceptional” in the wrong way. It is the ONLY industrialized country in the entire world that lacks a unified public healthcare delivery system. As a direct result, many thousands of people suffer and die for lack of prompt and adequate medical care, and literally hundreds of thousands more people are thrown into bankruptcy every year due to medical debt. Moreover, the United States endures the highest per-capita healthcare costs and suffers from some of the worst medical outcomes, on average, of industrialized countries in the world. These high costs and relatively poor outcomes are directly attributable to our current system. Some of the factors that militate against efficiency and fairness in the U.S. healthcare system include: linkage of health insurance to employment status; reliance on private insurance that maintains multiple systems of accountability and billing; inefficient cost-control strategies that are highly burdensome to physicians and other medical care providers; and federal prohibitions on price negotiations on pharmaceuticals by Medicare authorities even though the Veterans’ Affairs Department has this authority. The Hawaii Health Authority has issued three reports – in December 2011, January 2013, and December 2014. All of them have advocated adopting an “all payer” model to consolidate all healthcare funding that comes into Hawaii, and funding that is generated locally, into a single pool, to be governed and regulated under a single set of reasonable accounting, reporting, and billing procedures, designed to reduce administrative costs and burdens on medical providers and all others concerned. Since the time of those HHA reports, healthcare in Hawaii has been has been substantially deteriorating in important respects: The state ACA exchange has become a $200 million catastrophic failure. Doctor shortages are getting worse. Hawaii’s remaining doctors are increasingly demoralized by new documentation and reporting requirements that make it more difficult to practice medicine. Patients are paying higher insurance-coverage premiums, but are being charged higher co-payments and face higher deductibles, all with more restrictions on benefits. Hawaii’s hospitals are in serious financial trouble due in part to reductions in Medicare reimbursements that are likely to get worse with the new administration in Washington DC. The Democratic Party of Hawaii has long supported universal health care as part of its platform. In the most recent iteration of its Platform in May 2016, the Democratic Party of Hawaii declares, on pages 7-8 at lines 360-371: HEALTH CAREAccess to health care is a basic human need. Our citizens and visitors have an inherent right to high quality, high standard health care. The state legislature and the federal government should take all appropriate steps to create and support a health care system of public, for-profit, and nonprofit hospitals and other medical facilities that follow best practices to enhance and protect and preserve life. We support the development of long-term care financing solutions, better pay and working conditions for all health care providers, parity of mental and physical health coverage, and appropriate regulation of health care delivery systems. We also support the development of empirically validated prevention programs targeted at major public health issues. We support national healthcare reform via single payer universal healthcare. . . . The Hawaii Health Authority has already provided the underlying analytical framework for adoption of universal healthcare at the State level. It is now time to turn to action. That requires specific feasibility studies and action plans to launch the system. With a hostile new President and Congress, we fully expect attacks at the national level on all public support for health care to begin in the very near future. This situation has become a serious emergency that now requires our urgent and focused attention. Legislative Support: This proposal and request are supported by at least one member of the State Legislature to be formally named in the near future. Prior Legislation: HB 1504 of 2009, enacted as Act 11, 2009 First Special Session, passed over Gov. Lingle’s veto, and now codified as HRS Chapter 322H. Sponsors of HB 1504 included Reps. John Mizuno, Marcus Oshiro, Ryan Yamane, and then-Rep. Marilyn Lee. Democratic Party member(s) who will champion this proposed legislation Alan B. Burdick, email@example.com; 486-1018; SCC Oahu at-large rep; Chair, Progressive Democrats of Hawaii; Vice President, Americans for Democratic Action – Hawaii Chapter.Scott Foster, Chair, Kupuna Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, or his designee(s), firstname.lastname@example.org; 590-5880; Dennis B. Miller, email@example.com; 227-8241.SCC liaison – Alan B, Burdick, Oahu at-large Rep.; firstname.lastname@example.org; 486-1018. Respectfully Submitted by:This request and proposal are respectfully submitted by the Kupuna Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, Progressive Democrats of Hawaii, Americans for Democratic Action – Hawaii Chapter, Young Progressives Demanding Action (YPDA), and by hundreds of individual members of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, including more than 600 people who have signed a petition on Change.org sponsored by members of the Democratic Party of Hawaii.