East Hawaii News

State Emergency Proclamation on Homelessness Extended

February 23, 2016, 11:16 AM HST
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Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui. State of Hawai'i photo.

Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui. State of Hawai’i photo.

Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui, who is currently acting Governor, extended the emergency declaration proclamation to address homelessness across the state on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s extension is the third since October, when Governor David Ige initially declared an emergency on homelessness. It is set to expire in April.

The third supplemental proclamation will continue to provide emergency relief on Maui, where a long-term housing project in Wailuku is being conducted to serve between 64 and 128 households.

Efforts on the Big Island, as well as within the City & County of Honolulu and County of Kauai, will continue to be supported under the extension. All counties will also be provided relief to repair and maintain existing county shelters.

“I believe it’s important that we continue to provide the support and services to our State, City and County partners to address this pressing issue,” said Acting Governor Tsutsui.  “There’s still much work to do to address this crisis and we must keep the momentum going to help the homeless community.”

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Per capita, Hawai’i has the highest rate of homelessness in the entire country. There are approximately 465 homeless individuals per 100,000.

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“This extension puts an emphasis on the need for long-term housing for the homeless,” said Scott Morishige, the Governor’s Coordinator on Homelessness.  “At the end of the day, we need to put our focus on the need for developing homes for the homeless.”

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