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Editorial | Off the News

Off the News: Vaccine fears for athletes, parents

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The parental protests against the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for student athletes were significant, but the familial bonds around high school sports could present an opportunity for persuasion, as well. Parental consent is required by Hawaii law.

Health professionals, then, have a point of contact to allay some of the general vaccine fears, and get more people to get the shot. It will be interesting to see if similar mandates, for similar reasons, are applied to other extracurricular activities.

Reopening access to public records

Finally. More than 16 months after Gov. David Ige suspended government transparency laws, his latest emergency proclamation regarding the COVID-19 response fully reinstates the Uniform Information Practices Act, the state’s open records law.

In May 2020, Ige initiated a thaw of the freeze on the Sunshine Law, which governs open meetings. However, he kept in place a limited suspension of the open records law, citing an influx of “overly broad” requests. That reasoning seemed threadbare thin. Prompt access to public information is of heightened importance during suspension of normal government operations and oversight due to the pandemic.

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