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Half of Hawaii’s homeless are Native Hawaiian

Hawaii’s state homeless coordinator says half of the Island’s homeless are Native Hawaiian.

The situation has become so appalling, activist forced their way into empty units at the Ulu Ke Kukui housing project which are being renovated to house unsheltered Native Hawaiians, reports Hawaii News Now.

The protestors set up the units to get six people who had been living on the beach for years indoors. They did it without permission but officials say the six will be allowed to stay.

“It was a peaceful and appropriate protest. What this group did was unconventional, but I give them credit for challenging us to help them, which we did to the extent that we could,” said Lena Suzuki of the Waianae Moku Kupuna Council.

In a more conventional action, Hawaii Community Lending has received a donation of $1.5 million. The money will help at least 50 families to purchase homes, reported Hawaii Public Radio.

The money comes from Hawaii Pacific Health, in partnership with the Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Foundation.

“There’s been a lot of talk about affordable rentals. But the opportunity here is to build genuine wealth and to give folks access to land as really the key social determinant,” said HCL executive director Jeff Gilbreath.

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