Showing posts with label #IMOA. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #IMOA. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

🎥 IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article: (VIDEO)🎥 "Ending the Stigmatic Role of the National Guard: A Call for Change"

🎥 IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article: (VIDEO)🎥

 "Ending the Stigmatic Role of the National Guard: A Call for Change"

🌄Introduction:

Experience the National Guard's transformation in a split-screen animation. Historical images seamlessly evolve into a contemporary force. It emphasizes key points, setting the stage for a compelling narrative.
📅 Evolution of the National Guard:

Depicting the National Guard's shift from a part-time reserve to a vibrant, dynamic force. Each era unfolds with representative imagery, narrating the Guard's evolution.
🦠The COVID-19 Pandemic:

The article portrays National Guard heroes in action during the pandemic - distributing vaccines, conducting tests, and aiding healthcare systems.
⚖️Challenges and Disparities:

Witness the disparities between active duty and National Guard benefits. Scales and side-by-side comparisons use animated elements to spotlight these differences clearly.
🔄Proposed Solutions:
Experience a paradigm shift advocating for reform of career status rules. Watch as positive change unfolds, echoing a brighter future for National Guard members.
🤝Conclusion and Call to Action:
The National Guard remains a ready and reliable operational force. A call to action is made with the need for change that will inevitably make the Guard more ready, reliable, and resilient. inevitably


 #StigmasErased,#equity,#operationalforce,#dynamic,#Evolution,#COVID-19,#NationalGuard,#DisasterResponse,#retirementsecurity,#IMOA,

Friday, November 3, 2023

IMOA: Ending the Stigmatic Role of the National Guard: A Call for Change

 

(IMOA)

Imagine Pacific Original Article

"Ending the Stigmatic Role of the National Guard: A Call for Change"

By James E. Faumuina, MBA, MPA

Editor - Imagine Pacific Pulse

11/01/2023

Abstract: This article presents a compelling argument for a paradigm shift in the perception and treatment of the National Guard. It advocates for the recognition of the National Guard as a steady-state operational force with equivalent daily requirements for response and operational readiness as the active duty, particularly in relation to its unique Title 32 mission. The argument highlights the disparity in treatment between National Guard members and active duty members in terms of retirement benefits. It points out that National Guard members engaged in full-time Title 32 missions, which are authorized by federal law, should be given the opportunity to accumulate retirement benefits in a manner similar to active duty members. The argument questions why certain National Guard positions are not considered for retirement benefits when they may involve less hazardous or non-direct defense-related tasks compared to active duty positions. It suggests that if there is enough funding to support retirement benefits for active duty members without extensive scrutiny, the same opportunity should be extended to National Guard members to encourage their long-term commitment to service. In analyzing the challenges posed by current career status regulations, the article contends that all service members who can reach 20 TAFMS (Total Active Federal Military Service) should be entitled to do so.

The National Guard has played an indispensable role in the United States military, evolving from a part-time strategic reserve to becoming a force that effectively addresses contemporary challenges. However, the prevailing perception of the National Guard as primarily a strategic reserve has created barriers that hinder its full potential and restrict opportunities for its members. This article argues for a fundamental shift in the perception of the National Guard and advocates for its recognition as an operational regular force. Furthermore, it proposes that Guardsmen should be entitled to retire, if eligible, with a 20-year active duty retirement. It prompts readers to consider why institutional safeguards and gatekeeping procedures prevent rather than enable Guardsmen from attaining this right.

The COVID-19 pandemic has served as a significant turning point, highlighting the invaluable contributions of the National Guard in responding to crises (NCLS, 2020). Guard members have been at the forefront, providing essential support in testing, vaccine distribution, and aiding overwhelmed healthcare systems. The nature of the Guard's capabilities has evolved beyond the traditional categorizations of part-time versus full-time service. Their vital role in protecting the nation's well-being renders these outdated perspectives obsolete, as enlistment in the National Guard is now solely based on voluntary means. Retaining highly skilled and qualified warriors has become a pressing concern for the military branches, as experienced leadership is a scarce and coveted resource. Therefore, the retention of human resources, including experienced Guard members, should be treated with the same importance as other resource conservation methods.

The National Guard's indispensability stems from the constitutional requirement for the separation of military and civilian affairs and the management of the state. Posse Comitatus, established to prevent the military from being used as a means of domestic political will, ensures that federal forces are forbidden from enacting domestically militarily unless federalization occurs. Governors serve as the de facto commanders-in-chief of their respective states at times of emergency. In the event of a state of emergency declaration by the Governor, the respective Guard Adjutant General serves as the State’s Commander General. (FEMA, 2017). Moreover, in the recent pandemic response, the National Guard played an integral role in executing this essential homeland defense mission, including protecting national borders, and critical infrastructure, and responding to emergencies and disasters as they are mandated to do by regulation (DODI, 2017). Consistently over the years, these responsibilities have demanded continuous readiness and immediate response capabilities, necessitating the recognition of the National Guard as a force with a capacity that requires its Guardsmen to perform active duty far beyond the set 2 weeks a year, 14 days a year known as the required commitment edict for the reserve forces of the military.

Title 32 missions, authorized by federal law, grant the National Guard the authority to undertake specific continuous missions, such as cyber defense, counter-drug operations, and disaster response (U.S. Department of Defense, 2020). These missions often require full-time engagement and specialized skills that only the National Guard can provide. Guard members who are fortunate enough to attain one of the few treasured active duty positions under the Active/Guard and Reserve (AGR) program are granted equivalent privileges as the active duty uniformed members serving under Title-10 (federal) status.

There is a robust operational mission being conducted by the National Guard actively every day. However, underneath this vested importance is a conventional logic limiting Guardsmen that needs to be challenged. The Guard encompasses any and every AFSC/MOS (Air Force Specialty Code/Military Occupational Specialty) as active duty. In contrast, there are unique missions in the Guard that require niche units like the CERFP. As it stands today, not every Guardsman in these programs can attain a 20-year retirement unless they are in the AGR program. It is unjust that every Active Duty member can attain 20 years of service, regardless of whether their jobs involve hazards or direct defense of the homeland, while Guardsmen, specifically in programs like the CERFP, are being forced to cut their orders when they approach the cut-line of 18 years, at which time they would be entitled to receive a 20-year retirement.  

It is a fruitless and dangerous debate to compare positions based on perceived importance, and that is not the intent of this argument. A more productive rationale would be to consider how the active duty finds it sufficient, without any need for justification, for every position to warrant retirement without scrutiny. If there is no issue with granting this privilege to Active Duty members, then why can't Guardsmen, with the caveat they can attain 20 years of active duty, enjoy the same benefit? What is the harm in a Guardsman piecing together their Active Duty service in order to reach a 20-year Active Duty retirement?

It all revolves around the concept of “sanctuary” and how it is used as a tool to hinder Guardsmen from attaining the same rights and privileges that every active duty member has in obtaining an active duty retirement. As mentioned earlier with the CERFP, a preventative practice being conducted is the curtailment of orders based on proximity to 20 TAFMS (Total Active Federal Military Service) when they get close to sanctuary, essentially preventing them from ever attaining the coveted 20 year active duty retirement. (U.S. Department of Defense, 2019). This practice of creating barriers to attaining 20TAMFS restricts Guard members from attaining career status and the associated benefits.

By enabling Guardsmen to reach 20 TAFMS, regardless of their part-time or full-time status, and based on mission requirements and resource availability, we can effectively address and alleviate the challenges and inequities they face. This proposed change to the career status rules not only addresses the inherent injustices within the system but also enhances the operational readiness of the National Guard. This paradigm shift also aligns with the evolving nature of military operations and the need for flexible and integrated forces to tackle contemporary challenges. Recognizing the full-time commitment of Guard members will go a long way in ensuring they have access to the necessary resources, support, and career opportunities, enabling them to maintain the highest levels of readiness and effectiveness.

In conclusion, the time has come for a transformative shift in the way we perceive and treat the National Guard. The Guard, once considered a strategic reserve, has proven itself to be an indispensable force in our modern world. The COVID-19 pandemic and the tragic wildfires in Maui have demonstrated the vital role Guard members play in safeguarding our nation's well-being and security. They are no longer simply part-time soldiers but dedicated professionals, ready to respond to crises at a moment's notice.

This article has attempted to make a case for recognizing the National Guard as an operational regular force. It argues that Guardsmen, engaged in full-time Title 32 missions, should have the opportunity to accumulate retirement benefits, just like their active-duty counterparts. It questions why certain Guard positions are denied retirement benefits, even when their roles may be less hazardous or defense-related than active-duty positions.

The solution is simple: we must reform the career status rules to allow Guardsmen, based on mission requirements, to reach the 20-year active-duty retirement threshold. This change addresses not only the inherent injustices within the system but also enhances the National Guard's operational readiness. Again and again, the National Guard has served as a linchpin of our national security and community resilience. It goes without saying that they deserve the same rights and privileges as their active-duty counterparts. This paradigm shift will not only ensure the Guard's long-term commitment to service but also provide the necessary support and resources to maintain the highest levels of readiness.

The time has come to recognize and invest properly in the Guard's proven value and unwavering reliability. This is not just a call for change; it's a call to acknowledge the unwavering commitment and sacrifices made by citizen soldiers who take on the mantle of Guardsmen. To ensure a strong, agile, and effective National Guard that is prepared to meet today's demands, and those that will be even more demanding in the future, a radical systems revision is needed and unabashedly long overdue.

James is the owner of Imagine Pacific Enterprises and the Editor of Imagine Pacific Pulse (IMPULSE). He is a retired Lt Col, Hawaii Air National Guard. Former medical administrator, planner, program manager, and operations officer. Graduated from the USAF Air War College and is a graduate student at the University of Hawaii studying Disabilities Studies and Diversity. He can be contacted at jamesefa@hawaii.edu. 

Keywords:#NationalGuard, #paradigmshift, #recognition, #operationalforce, #Title32,#COVID-19,# pandemic,#careerstatus,# homelanddefense,#20-yearretirement,#equity,#readiness,#citizensoldiers,# systemschange,#IMOA,

References:

NCLS. (2020). National Guard Response to COVID-19. Retrieved from [insert URL]

U.S. Department of Defense. (2019). ANGI36-101, Air National Guard Active Guard Reserve (AGR) Program. Retrieved from [insert URL]

U.S. Department of Defense. (2020). U.S. Code Title 32, Chapter 1 - Organization. Retrieved from [insert URL]

(1)NIMS: https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/2020-07/fema_nims_doctrine-2017.pdf

(2) Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) https://www.esd.whs.mil/Portals/54/Documents/DD/issuances/dodi/302522p.pdf

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

IMOA: Housing... A Fantasy in Paradise

 

(IMOA) Imagine Pacific Original Article 



Housing... A Fantasy in Paradise

By James E. Faumuina, MBA, MPA

Editor Imagine Pacific Pulse    

8/09/2023


The cost of living in Hawaii is perennially one of the highest in comparison to the national average. This high cost of living can be attributed to various factors, but the foremost cause is housing. According to the most recent income statistics from the US Census Bureau, the median household income in Hawaii is $88,005(1) based on 2021 inflation-adjusted dollars. Though it is a significant amount of money, it is not sufficient to remedy the cost of housing. Despite having a higher income compared to the national average, many residents still struggle to find affordable housing options within their budget. The relatively high housing costs in Hawaii create a significant financial burden for households, even with an income that is above the national median.

A report titled “ALICE: A Study of Financial Hardship in Hawaii (2)” found a family of four in Hawaii needed a household income of more than $72,000(3), to afford basics like food, clothing, transportation, health care, and shelter. It identified families with income below this amount as “asset limited, income constrained, employed,” or ALICE, and an estimated 48% of people in Hawaii were living below the threshold. This situation leads to some residents being compelled to share their housing with other families in order to meet the financial demands of subsistence.

Housing challenges are the largest burden for residents and have a profound impact on the well-being and economic stability of residents in Hawaii. Affordability and overcrowding persist, making it increasingly difficult for individuals and families to secure adequate housing. The disparity between high housing costs and income levels contributes to the housing crisis faced by many residents, exacerbating the already challenging economic landscape.

The proposed rule on Fair Lending, Fair Housing, and Equitable Housing Finance(4) Plans by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) exemplifies policy progress aimed at addressing the housing challenges that affect all states including Hawaii. This rule has garnered support from organizations such as Prosperity Now(5), a nonprofit economic advocacy entity, as they believe it will play a pivotal role in narrowing the racial wealth divide and fostering equitable housing opportunities.

The primary objective of this proposed rule is to formalize fair lending practices and bolster the oversight functions of the FHFA. It advocates for the Banks to adhere to a framework that promotes equitable housing finance. The letter underscores the critical importance of creating an equitable housing ecosystem that addresses the needs of low-income families and marginalized communities. As the state looks at the locus of control internally with Governor Green's new housing initiatives(6), in tandem new housing rules could be just in time assistance needed in order to get his plans over the finish line.

Addressing this crisis requires comprehensive efforts to increase affordable housing options, improve income levels, and promote economic opportunities for residents of Hawaii. It will be crucial to implement policies and programs that alleviate the burden of housing costs and foster a more equitable housing ecosystem. By prioritizing affordable housing initiatives and investing in the economic advancement of its residents, steps can be taken to mitigate the hardships caused by the high cost of living and create a more sustainable and inclusive community. Regardless, it goes without saying that something needs to be done now, as prices continue to rise and the reality of home for many in Hawaii is becoming more and more fantasy in paradise.

James is the owner of Imagine Pacific Enterprises and the Editor of Imagine Pacific Pulse (IMPULSE). He is a retired Lt Col, Hawaii Air National Guard. Former medical administrator, planner, program manager, and operations officer. Graduated from the USAF Air War College and is a graduate student at the University of Hawaii studying Disabilities Studies and Diversity. He can be contacted at jamesefa@hawaii.edu. 

Keywords#AffordableHousing, #HousingCrisis,  #FHFA, #InclusiveLiving #CostOfLiving, #HawaiiHousing,#IMOA, #FantasyInParadise,

 References:

  1. Income By Zip Code. (n.d.). Hawaii Income by Zip Code. Retrieved from https://www.incomebyzipcode.com/hawaii
  2. United Way. (2017). United Way ALICE Report - Hawaii.
  3. Civil Beat. (2020, January). Report: Two-thirds of Hawaii Residents Struggle Financially. Retrieved from https://www.civilbeat.org/2020/01/report-two-thirds-of-hawaii-residents-struggle-financially/
  4. Federal Housing Finance Agency. (2023, June 26). Fair Lending, Fair Housing, and Equitable Housing Finance Plans. 12 CFR Part 1293, RIN 2590-AB29. Notice of proposed rulemaking.
  5. Prosperity Now. (2023, June 26). Letter to Clinton Jones, General Counsel, Federal Housing Finance Agency. Retrieved from https://prosperitynow.org/sites/default/files/PN%20FHFA%20Sign%20On%20Letter.pdf
  6. Hawaii Public Radio. (2022, December 5). Governor Green Commits to Housing Initiatives and Regressive Tax Cutting.



Monday, July 24, 2023

IMOA: SPP and COFA, Match Made in the Pacific

(IMOA) Imagine Pacific Original Article 




SPP and COFA, Match Made in the Pacific

By Lt. Col. Marlon Rimando, MD

Hawaii Air National Guard

Imagine Pacific Pulse    7/24/2023


In recognition of its 30th anniversary, it’s fitting that the United States Department of Defense's State Partnership Program (SPP) is poised more than ever to conduct capacity-building and empowering engagements in the Pacific (United States Department of Defense, n.d.)[1]. One such area where this could occur is between the National Guard and the Compact of Free Association (COFA) nations, including the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau. In fostering relationships and promoting security cooperation, the SPP can play a pivotal role in addressing the unique challenges faced by these Pacific island nations.

One of the primary interests in the region is the increasing influence of near-peer competitor nations (Asian Bureau of Research, 2017)[2]. As they expand their economic and diplomatic ties with the COFA nations, it becomes essential for the United States to prioritize its engagement with these countries. The SPP's efforts in building partnerships can serve as a strategic counterbalance to their growing influence and help ensure the long-term stability and development of the COFA nations.

Climate change is another pressing issue that profoundly affects the COFA nations. Rising sea levels, coastal erosion, and environmental degradation pose significant threats to these vulnerable island states (Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, 2022)[3]. The SPP's focus on environmental protection and sustainability can facilitate knowledge sharing and technical assistance in climate resilience and resource management, empowering the COFA nations to tackle climate-related challenges more effectively.

Moreover, the COFA nations' economic status could benefit from international support and cooperation. Through the SPP, U.S. states can provide expertise and resources in areas such as disaster response, healthcare, education, and economic development (Garamone, 2023)[4]. Working together by utilizing apparatus such as the SPP program, the COFA nations can access critical support to address their economic vulnerabilities and foster stronger, more resilient communities.

Furthermore, the SPP's emphasis on global health engagement offers significant potential for the COFA nations. The National Guard's experience in responding to public health emergencies can be leveraged to help Micronesia prepare for and respond to health crises, enhancing its capacity to address health challenges effectively (Brewington, Kokame, & Lewis, 2021)[5]. A study by the East-West Center showed that Micronesians had significantly worse Severity of Illness (SOI) for various health-related hospitalizations, emphasizing the need for support to address disparities (Hagiwara, 2016)[6]. Here is a perfect example where a program like the SPP could and should make a difference.

In conclusion, the State Partnership Program holds immense promise as a platform for building resilience in the COFA nations and promoting lasting relationships between U.S. states and these Pacific allies. Coincidently, the benefit is mutual with development capacity in COFA nations and preventative measures in the United States, as the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights reported more than $1 billion in costs associated with providing service to Micronesians for Hawaii and adjoining Pacific U.S. Territories (Rights, 2019)[7]. As the region faces growing geopolitical competition and climate change impacts, the SPP's role in fostering enduring partnerships takes on even greater significance. Strengthening ties and promoting shared goals, the SPP can contribute to a more comprehensive and coordinated U.S. approach in the Pacific, ensuring long-term sustainability and development in the region.

Lt Col Rimando is a graduate of the USAF Air War College and served on numerous State Partnership Program and Global Health Engagements with PACAF, the Hawaii Air National Guard, and the Hawaii National Guard. He is a Flight Surgeon, currently serving as the HING Task Force CBRNE Surgeon for the CERFP. He also works as a MEB Physician with Tripler Army Medical Center.


[1] United States Department of Defense. (n.d.). State Partnership Program.

[2]  National Bureau of Asian Research. (2017). China's Belt and Road Initiative in the Pacific Islands: Assessment of key economic issues and priorities.

[3] Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. (2020). Communiqué of the 51st Pacific Islands Forum.

[4] Garamone, J. (July 19, 2023). Milley Touts Successes of Guard's State Partnership Program. DOD News.

[5] Brewington, L., Kokame, K., & Lewis, N. (2021). A Changing Climate and Its Implications for Health and Migration in the Pacific: Examples from the Marshall Islands. East-West Center.

[6] Hagiwara, M. K. (2016). Health disparities among Micronesians in Hawaii. Hawaii Journal of Medicine & Public Health, 75(11), 325-329.

[7] United States Commission on Civil Rights. (2019). Separate and Unequal: Federal Protections and Enforcement in the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Palau.

 


Sunday, July 23, 2023

🌊IMSPARK! IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Articles🌊 (Video)

 Welcome to IMSPARK! In this video, we are thrilled to introduce you to IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article. IMOA is an exciting addition to Imagine Pacific Pulse, offering a platform for creativity and authenticity in the Pacific's vibrant creative community.

💡 Imagine a future where talented authors and genuine storytellers come together to share their unique perspectives, from thought-provoking real-world issues to captivating fictional tales. IMOA is an open platform that celebrates the power of imagination and diverse narratives from the Pacific region.
💼 At IMOA, we uphold the highest standards of conduct, ensuring that every article is free from plagiarism, exploitation, or threatening language. Each piece undergoes a thorough review by Imagine Pacific, ensuring excellence and professionalism in every published work.
💥 What's the Big Deal? IMOA sets itself apart from our IMEA (Imagine Pacific Envisioned Analysis) by providing an inclusive space for authors to showcase their creativity. It offers readers an opportunity to immerse themselves in authentic narratives that reflect the essence of the Pacific.
🌊 Join us on this literary adventure, as IMOA fosters a community of talented authors and storytelling enthusiasts, celebrating Pacific cultures, traditions, and experiences. Through the power of storytelling, we unite and contribute to a vibrant Pacific Island community where authentic voices thrive. Embark on this journey of creativity and exploration with IMOA. Celebrate the diversity and richness of the Pacific's creative spirit. Subscribe to Imagine Pacific to stay connected with our mission of promoting creativity and authenticity through IMOA and beyond.

Friday, July 21, 2023

📚IMSPARK: Introducing IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article 📚

 

📚IMSPARK: Introducing IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article 📚



💡Imagined Endstate:

Imagine a platform for published content creation. Welcome to IMOA, where creativity meets authenticity in the Pacific's vibrant creative community! IMOA, is a new product for the Imagine Pacific Pulse, offers a venue to publish original narratives. 🌱 From thought-provoking real-world issues to captivating fictional tales, IMOA is an open platform for authors eager to share their unique perspectives.

💼 Standards of Conduct:

With a commitment to upholding standards, IMOA ensures every article is free from plagiarism, exploitation, or threatening language. Each piece undergoes a thorough review by Imagine Pacific, ensuring excellence and professionalism.

💥What's the Big Deal:

📚 IMOA - Imagine Pacific Original Article provides an avenue to celebrate creativity and authenticity in the Pacific. This unique collection of narratives opens the doors to diverse topics and genuine storytelling. Different from our IMEA (Imagine Pacific Envisioned Analysis), IMOA welcomes a wide range of content, from thought-provoking real-world issues to captivating fictional tales.

🌊IMOA creates an inclusive platform for authors to share their unique perspectives, contributing to a rich tapestry of narratives that reflect the essence of the Pacific. Through IMOA, readers can immerse themselves in engaging and authentic narratives, showcasing the power of imagination.

💪 This initiative fosters a community of talented authors and genuine storytelling enthusiasts, celebrating Pacific cultures, traditions, and experiences.

In the spirit of the ingenuity of Pacific Islanders, IMOA attempts to further Imagine Pacific's commitment to nurturing a vibrant Pacific Island community where authentic voices thrive, contributing to the literary landscape. 📚


Wednesday, July 19, 2023

IMOA: That’s Fine for Waipahu: Gentrifications rears its ugly head

 Imagine Pacific Original Article (IMOA)



Title: That’s Fine for Waipahu: Gentrifications rears its ugly head

By James E. Faumuina

7/19/2023

The decision to close two major grocery stores in Waipahu town conveniently in front of two rail stations may have been made by the Honolulu City Council with a sense of indifference[1]. Maybe they believed the community would not complain, given their prior endurance of the rail construction and acceptance of issues like exposure to Heptachlor from the plantation. The closure of the remaining affordable sources of food in the town feels like yet another blow to a community raised on the belief that the company store would provide. It is almost as if they assumed the people of Waipahu were accustomed to such treatment.

Perhaps the council and developers believed that since Waipahu's poverty rate hovers around 9.5%, dangerously close to the worst quadrant of poverty according to the US Census, any gesture resembling economic development would be appreciated by the community[2]. It may not be arrogance, but rather a well-intentioned attempt to offer a helping hand. However, this raises an important question: Is this gesture truly a hand extended in support, or is it the developers raising their palms in a stopping motion?

If we accept the notion that these changes are for the community's own good, then the lack of Section 8 housing, the homelessness around Hans L'orange Park, and the infamous stories about Pupu streets may all resurface with renewed vigor under the guise of community development. My concern is the promised growth and economic revival unfortunately will begin with literal sweeping changes being made starting with the current residents being replaced.

I am intimately familiar with the area. My family moved there in 1982, and we were among the first to settle in Village Park (then Herbert Horita) Homes. Waipahu holds formative memories for me, from attending Saint Joseph's church to shopping at the Old Safeway, and even working at Blockbusters. I eventually was hired by the Leeward YMCA, as its Executive Director during the renovation of the old Sugarmill. While others may claim deeper roots, anyone from Waipahu shares a common bond with its unique sense of place, whether it's shopping at the Old Arakawa's or having breakfast at Rocky's.

In "Poverty in America," Matthew Desmond asked: "Who really benefits?" It is true, in Waipahu, some people live in poverty. Unfortunately, society holds beliefs about those in poverty, assuming laziness or lack of motivation. We tend to believe that being poor is a choice, contrasting it with success as if it were easily attainable for everyone. However, the reality is that anyone can spiral into poverty due to unforeseen circumstances such as illness, family deaths, accidents, lost businesses, missed paychecks, or even a DUI. No community is immune, but Waipahu has its share of challenges.

It takes sober eyes to recognize that "affordable" housing alone cannot be seen as a solution to ending poverty and perpetuating community development. There must be compensatory measures and community trade-offs in place, ensuring that when something is taken away, something of equal or greater value is given in return. The current messaging and proposed alternatives feel unbalanced. Unless you are among the "benefiting" group mentioned by Desmond, congratulations, I guess you are getting what you wanted.

The rail was offered to improve the quality of life for residents. However, it’s apparent we must be on guard against developments that create gentrification, with development at the expense of displacing residents or removing community assets without providing suitable replacements. If the council is genuinely committed to Waipahu’s development, they must prioritize and consider who will truly benefit from this proposal.

Key Words: #gentrification, #SocialJustice, #FoodSecurity, FoodDesert, #GenerationalPoverty,

[1] https://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/2023/06/23/2-popular-grocery-stores-waipahu-preparing-close-their-doors/

2] https://www.hawaiihealthmatters.org/indicators/index/view?indicatorId=240&periodId=9907&localeId=160463


 

🧠 IMSPARK: Thinking Strategically Like a Leader 🧠

  🧠  Imagine... Thinking Strategically Like a Leader  🧠  💡 Imagined Endstate:  You have developed your strategic thinking skills and can ...