It appears that Maui County Mayor Victorino is imposing more than social distancing onto the residents of Maui. He has created a “humane distancing” issue onto himself and his administrative leaders. The conditions for unsheltered residents at Kanaha with the Beach park gate locked is unfathomable.
The County is at the end of the hot, dusty road to provide provisions that were specifically directed by State of Hawaii Maui District Health Officer Lorrin Pang. In a formal Environmental Agriculture and Cultural Preservation Committee meeting, Mr. Pang gave clear directives that if the homeless have no where else to relocate, the safest thing to do is to shelter in place and make sure that medical needs are being met and that food is being delivered.
In Mayor Victorino’s press conference on June 3, 2020, a questioned was raised specifically regarding Kanaha Beach Park and the needs of homeless and unsheltered gathered in this area. Mayor Victorino’s answer was that he would open when it is clean and healthy. The comments are erroneous and serve zero merit. Those living at Kanaha have done an amazing job at keeping the area clean with rotating schedules of community participation. Mayor Victorino is extremely disconnected with the on-the-ground situations.
Homeless sweeps (oddly named Compassionate Response or Relocation) cannot occur if there are no shelter beds available. The laws have already been broken more than once on Maui island and all departments that work within the concerns of homelessness have been warned and reminded. The Mayor must muster forward a clear message of compassion during this extremely fragile time in our world and at the very least, open the gates to one of the most populated area of homeless, houseless, unsheltered and those living in their cars. #OpenKanahaGates