Smart Justice hosts virtual talk story and pau hana events

For the past few weeks, you’ve seen our public officials play a dangerous game by stoking fear of hardened criminals taking over Hawai‘i if the state and counties were to compassionately release people to their homes and ‘ohana during the COVID-19 crisis.  But little focus has been said — or heard from the people who are most vulnerable to the crisis: the people in our prisons and jails.

“We were 15 people in one cell over the whole weekend at the Maui police station. One toilet, no disinfection, no masks. This isn’t safe for anyone.” 

Although people often think of prisons and jails as closed environments, they are not. Medical staff, correctional staff, and visitors come from the community into the facilities every day and then return home. People are admitted to and released from prisons and jails, and they go back and forth to court and to medical appointments. There is ample opportunity for a virus to enter a prison or jail, and for it to go back out into the community.

And, today we just heard the Hawai‘i Paroling Authority has decided to cancel all hearings for the reminder of April. This means incarcerated people have little recourse to return to their families at a time when it’s most critical to reduce Hawaii’s incarcerated population and manage any COVID-19 outbreaks.

We know it’s an uncertain time. We all have questions about the coming days and weeks but that’s why why we want to stay connected with you. Next week we’re hosting a series of Talk Stories on Maui, Kaua‘i, O‘ahu, and Hawai‘i island to provide some Smart Justice updates and hear from you.

Can you join us for a Talk Story with your friends on your island?

Tell us what’s happening in your neighborhoods. How are you holding up? Stocked up on toilet paper? Then, let’s work together to keep our ohana and communities safe.

Talk Story with Smart Justice

If you do not already have the ZOOM app, you can download it via their website or join us via your phone. After registering in one of the links below, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Oahu Virtual Talk Story

Where: Click here to RSVP
When: Thursday, April 23, 6:00 PM

Hawai`i Island Virtual Talk Story

Where: Click here to RSVP
When: Thursday, April 23, 7:00 PM

Kaua`i Virtual Talk Story

Where: Click here to RSVP
When: Friday, April 24, 6:00 PM

Maui Virtual Talk Story

Where: Click here to RSVP
When: Friday, April 24, 7:00 PM

Friday Night Pau Hanas

Every Friday evening at 5pm, we host a Virtual Pau Hana to check in with all our Smart Justice friends and provide updates throughout Hawai‘i. Chat with us after work or zoom in from your couch or kitchen table.

Click here to RSVP for SJ Pau Hana. 

Mahalo for always fighting with us. And wash yo hands.

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