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With curfew rule expiring, officials will meet residents

  • BRUCE ASATO / BASATO@STARADVERTISER.COM
    The curfew at Kalihi Valley Homes ends Aug. 1. Residents Wanita Farata and her 18-year-old daughter, Dreama, like the curfew.
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The state public housing authority will meet with residents of Kalihi Valley Homes next week as authorities prepare to lift a four-month curfew.

The Hawaii Public Housing Authority instated the curfew after a man was shot in the face at Kalihi Valley Homes in March.

The regulation was approved under a state law allowing for a temporary rule to protect public safety, lasting up to 120 days. Denise Wise, HPHA executive director, said that period would end Aug. 1 and cannot be renewed.

The curfew, which began April 1, requires residents to stay in their units from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., and guests are not allowed during those hours.

MEETING ABOUT THE CURFEW

Time: 6 p.m.

Date: July 28

Place: Kalihi Valley District Park recreation center on Kamehameha IV Road

 

The overwhelmingly positive feedback astounded Wise, who received only one or two complaints.

The Housing Authority plans to meet with residents on July 28 to inform them about the curfew’s ending and to solicit their opinions about how the mandatory regulation helped, what made them feel safe and what can be done to maintain the sense of security.

Chuukese, Samoan, Tongan, Korean and Vietnamese translators will interpret for non-native speakers and help them ask questions.

The curfew was an effort to cool a spate of violence between residents of Kalihi Valley Homes and Kuhio Park Terrace.

A curfew was also expected for Kuhio Park Terrace, but that idea was dropped after most of the families did not want it, said Leva Alualu, president of the Kuhio Park Terrace Resident Association. The property already has a successful security program in which residents work as management assistants and respond to complaints, rather than hiring an outside company to handle security.

An additional security officer has been patrolling at night at Kalihi Valley Homes, Wise said. On July 4 she visited Kalihi Valley Homes, and it was quiet enough to "hear a pin drop" after 10 p.m.

"Everybody was being very respectful of everybody’s space," she said. "It was just amazing to me."

Residents of Mayor Wright Homes, another public housing property, have asked for a permanent curfew, she added.

Wise said the nighttime restriction may have been effective because it came after the first shooting on public housing property in a long time.

"I think it really woke up a lot of people," she said. "It scared a lot of people. There’s a lot of kids there."

Dreama Farata, 18, who has lived on the property for about six years with her sister, mother and now her sister’s infant son, said she likes the curfew because it is aimed at safety.

"We don’t want anybody to get hurt anymore," she said.

Safiti Fatu, who has lived at the property for 12 years, said that before the curfew there were problems of drinking, parties, fights and drugs.

But with the curfew, security has been enforcing the rules, having illegally parked cars towed and cutting out the "drinking around the house" that kept his eight children indoors after dinner.

"Right now my kids can go play outside," he said.

Wise said residents tell her they can sleep through the night and are no longer afraid.

"Our residents have had the opportunity to see what it is like to be in a peaceful community or a respectful community," Wise said. "Hopefully they will want to continue it."

 

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