Tags: hawaii | homeless | emergency | governor

Hawaii Homeless Emergency Declared by Governor, Temporary Housing Built

Image: Hawaii Homeless Emergency Declared by Governor, Temporary Housing Built
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By    |   Monday, 19 Oct 2015 08:56 AM

Hawaii Gov. David Ige declared a statewide emergency in regard to the state's skyrocketing rate of homelessness on Friday shortly after officials cleared the Kakaako neighborhood in Honolulu, one of the nation's largest homeless encampments.

"We are making sure that we have options for those who are homeless to move into an emergency shelter, and the biggest deficit in the system is shelter space for families," Ige said, according to The Associated Press. "So the emergency proclamation would allow us to stand up shelters for families in an expeditious manner."

As of the last official count, there were 7,260 homeless people in Hawaii — which has a state population 1.4 million — giving the state the highest homelessness rate per capita across the U.S.

The emergency declaration will specifically allow for the $1.3 million in spending to set up permanent housing for families and the chronically homeless.

"The emergency proclamation will also facilitate the construction of a transitional housing facility for homeless families. The facility will be temporary and have a clear sunset date," said the government's statement.

According to the Daily Mail, lawmakers have also approved the buying of one-way plane tickets out of the state, hoping to cut down on the amount of money spent and in some cases reunited the homeless with family on the mainland.

"We remain concerned this program is an invitation to purchase a one-way ticket to Hawaii with a guaranteed flight home," said Kayla Rosenfeld, the spokesperson for the Hawaii Department of Human Services.

On nearby Sand Island, the government is busy installing shelters made from modified shipping containers. The containers have a window and a screen door, are ventilated, and have a reflective coating to stave off the heat.

"It's kind of as comfortable as you can get without mechanical air conditioning," said Russ Wozniak, an architect and engineer from Group 70, an architecture firm.

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Hawaii Gov. David Ige declared a statewide emergency in regard to the state's skyrocketing rate of homelessness on Friday shortly after officials cleared the Kakaako neighborhood in Honolulu, one of the nation's largest homeless encampments.
hawaii, homeless, emergency, governor
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2015-56-19
Monday, 19 Oct 2015 08:56 AM
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