The state of Hawaii has a strong commitment to the protection of civil rights. Article I, Section 5 of the Hawaii Constitution provides that “no person shall be denied the enjoyment of civil rights or be discriminated against in the exercise thereof because of race, religion, sex or ancestry.” The legislature gave meaning to this commitment by creating the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission (HCRC), through enactment of Act 219 in 1988 and Acts 386 and 387 in 1989.
The HCRC was organized in 1990 and officially opened its doors in January 1991. HCRC has enforced state laws prohibiting discrimination in employment (H.R.S. Chapter 378, Part I), housing (H.R.S. Chapter 515); public accommodations (H.R.S. Chapter 489), and access to state and state-funded services (H.R.S. §368-1.5). The HCRC receives, investigates, conciliates, and adjudicates complaints of discrimination.
The HCRC has five (5) uncompensated volunteer Commissioners. They are appointed by the Governor, with the consent of the Senate, based on their knowledge and experience in civil rights matters and commitment to preserve the civil rights of all individuals. Read more…