ACLU of Hawai‘i Report Shows Current Bail Practices Prioritize Wealth Of The Accused Over Risk To The Community

Honolulu, Hawai‘i: the ACLU of Hawai‘i (“ACLU”) has released a study showing that almost half of the people in Hawai‘i jails are pre-trial detainees who have not been convicted of the crimes for which they’ve been accused. This preliminary report, called “As Much Justice As You Can Afford – Hawaiiʻs Accused Face an Unequal Bail […]


Times change, political leaders change, but the American Civil Liberties Union mission remains the same: no matter who is in charge, we’re here to protect and advance civil rights as guaranteed by the U.S. and Hawai‘i State Constitutions. We are non-profit, non-partisan, and do not accept government funding. The ACLU of Hawai‘i was established in […]


We cannot criminalize our way out of an affordable housing crisis. But that is now the City’s plan. The City Council passed, and Mayor Caldwell has today signed, Bills 51 and 52. These expand on failed policies that cost taxpayers millions of dollars and accomplish nothing to address the root causes of Honolulu’s escalating affordable […]


Hilo woman endures 18-week bureaucratic mess to acquire full driver’s license Read the demand letter: Hawai‘i DMV Letter Companion letters to Honolulu County, Maui County, Kaua‘i County County statement and ACLU of Hawai‘i reply Honolulu, Hawai‘i: The ACLU of Hawai‘i (ACLU) has sent a demand letter to County of Hawai’i government offices that oversee the […]

Civil Rights “Talk Story” Comes to Kaua‘i!

  Talk-Story Kaua‘i Thursday, August 30 2018 5:30-7:30 p.m. St. Michael & All Angels Church (4364 Hardy St., corner of Hardy & Umi) Your RSVP helps us plan refeshments: Able to help us get the word out? Print or email this flyer: 3talk_story_Kauai2018 Please come and please bring a friend! Join Kaua‘i based board […]

Criminalizing poverty, survival & homelessness: City Council Bills 51 and 52

Bill 51 (O‘ahu wide sit/lie ban) and 52 (criminalizing “lodging” on City sidewalks) were both up for first reading at the Honolulu City Council meeting on Wednesday, July 11 2018 at Kapolei Hale.  The ACLU of Hawai‘i submitted opposition testimony on both measures. These passed first reading, and public hearings will follow.  Please follow us […]

ACLU Hawai‘i: Mahalo Governor Ige for allowing Police Standards bill to become law

UPDATE 7/10/18: We did it! The ACLU of Hawai’i thanks Governor Ige for allowing HB 2071, which will create a law enforcement standards board, to become law. By listening to the concerns of the people – and their representatives who passed this bill unanimously – the Governor has done the right thing. His action today […]

ACLU of Hawai‘i thanks elections officials: proclamation lets Hawai‘i Island voters register and vote in person on election day

The State Chief Elections Officer and the Hawai’i County Clerk have responded to a demand letter from the ACLU of Hawai’i. That letter expressed concerns about the constitutionality of the Office of Elections’ original voting plan for precincts 4-03 and 4-04, which did not allow for in-person voting and registration on election day. Both of […]

ACLU of Hawai‘i seeking applicants to join its leadership team

The ACLU of Hawai‘i has announced two new leadership roles for the affiliate. It will be hiring a Smart Justice Campaign Director to lead Hawaii’s Smart Justice campaign, which is part of a coordinated, nationwide effort to halve incarceration rates and confront systemic racial inequalities in the criminal justice system. The affiliate is also hiring a Development Director to build its capacity at a time when civil […]

American experiment still thrives

By Executive Director Joshua Wisch, as published in the Star Advertiser 7/4/2018. America is an experiment and experiments are messy things. By their nature, experiments upset the status quo, the world as it is. They can be frightening. They can be dangerous. They can be divisive.But they cannot fail. Not really. As Thomas Edison noted after being […]

ACLU Demands State Office of Elections Allow Pahoa Voters to Register and Vote in Person on Election Day

Read the demand letter: 6.29.18 – ACLU Demand Letter re primary election HONOLULU: The ACLU of Hawai‘i Foundation (ACLU of Hawai’i) issued a demand letter on Friday to the Hawai‘i Office of Elections. The letter, written by ACLU of Hawai’i Legal Director, Mateo Caballero, vows swift legal action if the “severe burden on the right […]

#familiesbelongtogether events in Hawai‘i, Sat., 6/30