comscore Honolulu mayor extends private security guard patrol over 9 city parks | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Hawaii News

Honolulu mayor extends private security guard patrol over 9 city parks

  • BRUCE ASATO / OCT. 1

    Mayor Kirk Caldwell walks by Aala Park where homeless encampments nearly make pedestrian traffic impassable.

A one-month pilot project to hire private security guards to patrol nine city parks for illegal homeless activity will be extended into January.

Last month the city hired Hawaii Protective Association at a cost of $44,000 to send pairs of unarmed private security guards to rotate among nine city parks around the clock.

The presence of the guards has not eliminated all illegal homeless activity in and around the parks. But since the pilot project began Nov. 15, Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s office has been monitoring the parks three times per week — on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays — and said “the results are very positive.”

Photographs and descriptions of homeless activity in and around the nine parks were documented by Caldwell’s office and can be found at bit.ly/2Qsimwy.

“The good news is that security in our parks is working,” Caldwell said in a statement. “We will continue to monitor the progress as the pilot project continues for another month, and if the results remain positive we will seek to secure additional funding in the upcoming operating budget to keep our parks open and available for park use for everyone.”

In announcing the program last month, Caldwell said the nine parks were chosen based on complaints about homeless activity.

WHO TO CALL

To notify the city about illegal homeless activity, call 768-4381.

The parks:

>> Aala

>> Ala Wai Community

>> Ala Wai Neighborhood

>> Crane Community

>> Kamamalu Neighborhood

>> Moiliili Neighborhood

>> Mother Waldron

>> Old Stadium

>> Pawaa In-Ha

The pilot project follows the city’s hiring of American Guard Services Inc. in April to lock park bathrooms and gates at night. That project has since expanded to 41 city parks across the island following more than 600 acts of vandalism to city parks in three years.

City officials said Thursday that plans are underway to expand the program of locking up city parks to the North Shore and Windward side.

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