Filipino community urges elected officials to support causes during legislature opening

HONOLULU, HI — The sights and sounds of unified chants, prayers and hula from the Hawaii Rising movement dominated the opening day of the Hawaii state legislature in Honolulu.

The gathering of about 350 people consisting of native Hawaiians and supporters performed the protocol of the peaceful gatherings that were inspired by the recent protests involving Mauna Kea.

Legislators, lobbyists, and other visitors of the capitol looked on from the rails of the halls at the Hawaii state capitol to witness the performances on the first-floor rotunda.

The typically crowded event also brought to the state capitol some groups ready to make their voices heard.

Filipino members of the Alliance of Professional Primary Caregivers were present to support a bill that would crackdown on illegal care homes.

“This is an industry that is regulated, and all regulated industries should be regulated by the department of health or whoever is giving their license. It’s very important because this is the lives of people we are working for and taking care of, especially the frail elderly who really need our help.”

“If you want to be in the care home industry, you have to be licensed. Do the right thing, you pay taxes, and be compassionate.”

2020 marks the 30th convening for the Hawaii state legislature. On Tuesday, the statehouse, along with Senate and strong support from Governor Ige, proposed a package that would raise the minimum wage, create more affordable housing, and build more preschools.”

This Fil-Am state senator is also raring to get things done.

“I know that we have an earned income tax credit that is not refundable, we’re gonna change that so that you’ll get a little bit more money in your pocket.”

“We’re gonna raise the minimum wage. Maybe not as high as some people are talking about, but overall, with the additional help with childcare, I think it will really help our working families.”

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