Task Force Demands Action On Hawaiian Incarceration

Chad Blair/Civil Beat

Michael Broderick, chairman of the Native Hawaiian Justice Task Force, warned media at a press conference Thursday that he wasn't going to rush through what he had to say.

In a kukui nut, the message was this: The state can no longer ignore the growing problem of Hawaiians in prisons.

"It is a tragedy that in their homeland, Native Hawaiians are over-represented at every stage of the criminal justice system," said Broderick, a former Family Court judge now serving as CEO at YMCA Honolulu.

The task force, created by the Hawaii Legislature and spearheaded by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, builds on a 2010 study that confirmed what many had long feared: Hawaiians are more likely to be sent to prison for longer periods than nearly every other racial or ethnic group in the islands.

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