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Wrap up: Bill 59 criminalizing homelessness, down for the count or just back to corners?

Bill 59 deferred:

Bill 59 would have made it illegal to lie down on the sidewalk. Introducer Councilmember Stanley Chang insisted it did not target the homeless. Councilmember Breene Harimoto asked who else lies down on the sidewalk?

After I made repeated loud and smug predictions that in spite of all morality and good sense the Honolulu City Council would pass Bill 59, the Council deferred the measure. It might come back, but probably not soon.

A lot of people of all stripes came out to oppose the measure. Here's a 5 minute wrap up of the testimony including an edit of Councilmember Breene Harimoto's very much appreciated statement about the bill. It's the very first time I've heard a councilmember oppose a bill on the grounds of morality.

Did the public outcry and testimony do the trick? Is this people power? Three committee councilmembers couldn't support the bill, but only one, Breene Harimoto, was actually opposed to the measure. Kymberly Pine's objection was based on the fact that the Bill used the term "lying down on the sidewalk," which directly violated Kamehameha's Law of the Splintered Paddle, and the Kanaka Maoli in her district take the law seriously. If the bill's wording were changed, she would be okay with it.

Ikaika Anderson couldn't support the bill because he thought it might be vulnerable to law suits. Like Pine he didn't have a big problem with its intent to criminalize the homeless.

I am amazed and surprised at the diversity of people who opposed Bill 59, so I am willing to call its defeat a victory for the people:

I also cut highlight testimony into individual chunks and put each hearing day's into separate YouTube playlists:

Bill 59 hearing of 10/29/13 playlist

Bill 59 hearing of  11/19/13 playlist

If you have to watch just one video, watch Councilmember Breene Harimoto's here.

For some background, here's a link to my original description and testimony against Bill 59.

Help keep the lights on at Hawaii Guerrilla Video:

The "guerrilla" video group I'm in with Laulani Teale and Kamuela Vance had some funding 18 months ago, but it's pretty much out of money at the moment. We have a small kine fund raiser at Indiegogo going for stuff like bandwidth (for mobile streaming), parking for hearings and stuff like that. Our labor is always free. Just a few more days to go...

Learn more about Hawaii Guerrilla Video and how to help here.

When Indian journalist P. Sainath came to Hawaii, I livestreamed his presentation. There's about a one minute section that's practically an advertisement for an alternative media fundraiser:

H. Doug Matsuoka
(@hdoug on Twitter)
24 November 2013
Makiki, Honolulu


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