Unafraid to challenge the status quo.
A strong advocate for our community.
I'm here to serve our community. We deserve strong and effective leadership, especially in this unprecedented time. I’m proud that under my leadership as Speaker of the House of Representatives, we have stepped up. Rather than criticizing others for Hawaii's problems, we have taken on challenges no one else has.
The COVID-19 pandemic hit our state economy and community hard. When unemployment claims exploded from a normal 1,000 per week to an unprecedented 150,000, and the Department of Labor did not have staff to handle the load, I took the lead to help set up an emergency unemployment intake center.
The House of Representatives sent over 200 volunteers to process unemployment applications and take calls to get people help faster. More than 130,000 claims have now been paid out thanks to the hard work of our volunteers. Although there is more to do, I am proud of our boots-on-the-ground work to help people through this very difficult time.
This pandemic has brought us closer together and I’m proud of our community for making sacrifices to keep us all safe. I hope we will continue to wash our hands, wear masks if we’re sick, and be considerate of how our health and hygiene impacts our neighbors around us.
Most of all, this pandemic shows us we need to rethink our economy and build a more resilient future, creating new opportunities for our next generation. There is no better time to create new jobs in renewable energy, technology, agriculture, healthcare, and improve the quality of life for everyone in Hawaii. This is our moment. Let's work together to make it happen.