Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

The Conversation: What is Community's Responsibility When Dealing with Homeless?

dronepic/Wikimedia Commons

In West Hawaii this month, close to 150 people turned out at a meeting to express their frustration at the response by officials to deal with homeless complaints.  On Maui the annual Point in Time count showed a slight decline, but on Kauai the numbers appear to have skyrocketed.  What’s a community to do? On the Big Island some business have suggested taking matters into their own hands.  

Today we sit down to talk about the homelessness situation on the neighbor islands and the role communities play in finding solutions.  Our guests are: 

  • Jillian Okamoto, Division Administrator for Housing Assistance and Referral Programs for  Catholic Charities Hawaii.
  • Brandee Menino, Chief Executive Officer of Hope Services Hawaii and Chair of Bridging the Gap, a coalition of agencies working to end homelessness on the neighbor islands.
  • and Maude Cumming, Executive Director of the Family Life Center, Maui’s primary homeless outreach agency and previous chair of Bridging the Gap.

Stay Connected
Catherine Cruz is the host of The Conversation. Originally from Guam, she spent more than 30 years at KITV, covering beats from government to education. Contact her at
More Episodes