The First Hawaiʻi Abolition Collective Direct Action

Our first HAC direct action
Group picture from our first Hawaiʻi Abolition Collective action

Two days ago I wrote about how my abolition working group became the Hawaiʻi Abolition Collective, and tonight we hosted our first Hawaiʻi-related event! During our last Study and Struggle meeting of the curriculum this past Thursday, a few of us shared how we hope we can hold some type of event in honor of the people in jails and prisons who have gotten sick and/or died in those facilities. Motivated by Honolulu Mayor Caldwell (just truly the worst human being) announcing the City and County won’t add positives from incarcerated folk into the daily COVID count, we immediately began planning our first Hawaiʻi Abolition Collective (a name we founded only on Saturday!!) get together. The main goal for many PIC abolitionists right now is to get as much attention as possible surrounding mass COVID infections in previously mentioned facilities and ensure that people are released from their shackles and cages. For this reason, we organized the first Hawaiʻi Abolition Collective candlelight vigil to honor the lives lost and the suffering due to COVID-19 outbreaks. My comrades and I thought of the vigil on Thursday during the meeting, so we planned it for a while on Saturday, worked extremely hard on press releases, email invitations, graphics, media kits, brochures, demand letters, etc., and ended up outside OCCC tonight with KITV covering the vigil! We had 30 people (most of whom weren’t HAC group members!!) attend our first Hawaiʻi abolition event where we said pule for the lives infected and lost inside Hawaiʻi cells, spoke to the masses about why we believe in abolition, read poems, sang Christmas carols, read the names of the people who died in Hawaiʻi facilities, held a moment of silence for them, closed up, and finished the event by 7:45 p.m.! TJ Horgan of KITV (a lovely man!) covered the vigil in this article where I look and sound like I’ve taken one too many pills! Our next event is another vigil we’ll hold at OCCC again at 6 p.m. on January 6th. Follow along on our Twitter account @abolitionhawaii and I hope to see you all in January!