ASSOCIATION OF HAWAIIAN CIVIC CLUBS
NO. 2020 – 40
RECOGNIZING THE HAWAIIAN CIVIC CLUB OF HONOLULU’S “KOA TO KANAKA” INITIATIVE TO INCREASE SUPPORT AND OUTREACH TO NATIVE HAWAIIAN MILITARY VETERANS
WHEREAS, Hawaiʻi has historically lower usage of benefits offered through the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), with only 15% of Hawaiʻi’s qualified veterans utilizing one or more VA benefits, compared to the national minority utilization rate of 44% (See State Summary: Hawaii, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, 2010; See also Minority Veterans Report: Military Service History and VA Benefit Utilization Statistics, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, 2017); and
WHEREAS, Hawaiʻi veterans are more susceptible to homelessness and falling within the Aloha United Way’s ALICE® (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) population, which categorizes those struggling in Hawaiʻi to make ends meet; and
WHEREAS, Native Hawaiian have higher rates of death in Hawaiʻi and lower life expectancy compared to other ethnic groups (See Assessment and Priorities for Health & Well-Being in Native Hawaiians & Other Pacific Peoples, Department of Native Hawaiian Health John A. Burns School of Medicine University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, 2013); and
WHEREAS, the Native Hawaiian military veteran community has lower VA benefit utilization compared to other minority ethnicities; and
WHEREAS, the VA has identified veteran benefit awareness as a leading issue (See Minority Veterans Report: Military Service History and VA Benefit Utilization Statistics, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, 2017); and
WHEREAS, we believe that Native Hawaiian veterans do not use their VA benefits, due in part, to their lack of knowledge that they qualify and lack of understanding how to access the benefits; and
WHEREAS, the Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu is exploring an initiative called “Koa to Kanaka” to address the lack of support and outreach to Native Hawaiian veterans by drawing upon the expertise of current and former Native Hawaiian service members.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs at its 61st Annual Convention held online, in the malama of Makali‘i and the rising of ʻOlekūkolu, this 22nd day of November 2020, recognizing the Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu’s “Koa to Kanaka” initiative to increase support and outreach to Native Hawaiian military veterans; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Association commends the Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu for taking a leading role to increase the support for and outreach to Native Hawaiian military veterans; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a certified copy of this resolution be transmitted to the Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu, Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement, as well as the Governor of the State of Hawai‘i, President of the State Senate, Speaker of the State House of Representatives, Chair of the State Senate subject matter committee on Hawaiian Affairs, Chair of the State House subject matter committee on Hawaiian Affairs, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, and all County Mayors.
The undersigned herby certifies that the foregoing Resolution was duly adopted in the malama of Makaliʻi and the rising of ʻOlekūkolu on the 22nd day of November 2020, at the 61st Annual Convention of the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs held online.
Hailama V.K.K. Farden, President