Hawaii - COVID-19 Covered

Hawaii

Total Cases: 25,109 (January 23)
Tests Administered: 25,498 (January 20)
Fatalities: 331 (January 23)
Testing:
  • Information on COVID-19 testing in Hawaii can be found here. 

ECONOMIC RESPONSE

Essential Service Designations:

  • Governor Ige issued an executive order declaring the list of essential services includes: healthcare services and facilities; stores that sell groceries and medicine; food, beverage, cannabis production and agriculture; educational institutions; organizations that provide charitable and social services; media; gas stations and businesses needed for transportation; financial institutions; hardware and supply stores; critical trades; mail, post, shipping, logistics, delivery, and pick-up services; laundry services; restaurants for consumption off-premises; supplies to work from home; supplies for essential businesses and operations; transportation; home-based care and services; residential facilities and shelters; professional services; child care services for certain employees; manufacture, distribution, and supply chain for critical products and industries; critical labor union functions; hotels and motels; funeral services; and government functions. (March 23)

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • The Hawaii Department of Health announced it would enforce physical distancing requirements for food establishments across the state. Businesses that fail to comply will be forced to close. (July 10) 
  • Governor Ige signed an executive order allowing out of state physicians to dispense prescriptions without registering with Hawaii officials, and permitting the Department of Human Services to relax childcare guidelines, establish an employment and training fund, relax unemployment qualifications, and expand telehealth and online notary services. (March 29) 
  • Hawaii launched the Reducing Unemployment Disruption & Driving Economic Regeneration (RUDDER) program to train unemployed individuals for government positions and reduce unemployment. (March 23) 

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • The Hawaii Public Housing Authority opened its Section 8 housing vouchers waitlist to low-income families on Oahu who already had a place to live and a landlord willing to participate. (October 30) 
  • Hawaii instituted a restaurant cash card program to provide financial support to the unemployedResidents would receive $500 in pre-loaded debit cards to spend at local restaurants. (October 2) 
  • Governor Ige announced a $100 million rent relief and housing assistance program for unemployed or partially unemployed workers. (September 9) 
  • Governor Ige made several modifications to the state legislature’s proposed budget, including changes to unemployment benefits and housing/rental assistance. (July 31) 
  • Governor Ige signed an emergency proclamation extending the previous ban on evictions. (July 20) 

Business Support & Resources:

  • Hawaii launched the Hawaii Business Pivot Grant program, which would provide small businesses with reimbursement grants to cover expenses incurred from implementing changes to their operations, products, and services due to the pandemic. (October 21) 
  • The Department of Human Services announced that $15 million in CARES Act funds would be available to support licensed childcare programs. (October 5) 
  • Hawaii launched a program to help workers displaced by COVID-19 that would match workers with companies in emerging industries and sectors such as conservation, renewable energy, agriculture, creative arts, aerospace, entrepreneurship, and STEM fields. (September 21) 
  • The Honolulu City Council approved a resolution that would provide rent relief to businesses through a grant program for landlords. (September 11) 
  • Honolulu Mayor Caldwell announced $2.6 million in federal coronavirus relief funds to help the fishing industry. (July 8) 

SOCIAL RESTRICTIONS

Reopening:

  • Governor Ige approved Kauai’s request to implement a pre-and post-travel testing program for visitors who stay in “resort bubble” hotels. (January 4) 
  • Governor Ige signed an emergency proclamation that reduced the state’s mandatory self-quarantine period for travelers entering the state and traveling between counties from 14 to 10 days. (December 18) 
  • Governor Ige released updated COVID-19 vaccine plans. (December 11) 
  • Governor Ige approved Kaua‘i Mayor Derek Kawakami’s request to place a temporary moratorium on Kaua‘i’s participation in the state’s pre-travel testing program. Effective December 2 at 12:01AM, all transpacific and intercounty travelers arriving in Kaua‘i would be subject to a 14-day quarantine, regardless of testing. (November 27) 
  • Governor Ige signed a 16th COVID-19 emergency proclamation requiring all transpacific travelers to have a negative test result from a trusted travel partner before their departure for the State of Hawai‘i, in order to bypass the 14-day quarantine. (November 23) 
  • Governor Ige issued an emergency proclamation that extended and clarified the statewide mask mandate. (November 18) 
  • Governor Ige approved Honolulu Mayor Caldwell’s order that moved Oahu into the second stage of reopening, under which gyms, personal care services, and other activities would be able to resume. (October 23) 
  • Governor Ige approved Honolulu Mayor Caldwell’s decision to remove the current stay-at-home order and transition to a fourtier “COVID-19 Recovery Framework.” (September 23) 
  • Honolulu Mayor Caldwell extended Honolulu’s stay-at-home order with changes to allow for limited outdoor activities. (September 9) 
  • Governor Ige signed an emergency proclamation that mandates the use of masks and extends the eviction moratorium. (August 21) 

SCHOOL PLANNING

K-12:

  • The Hawaii Department of Education (DOE) will resume providing free meals for students at 203 schools beginning October 12 through December 18. (October 14) 
  • The Hawaii Board of Education approved a set of directives, including enforcing 6 feet of physical distancing on campus, proper mask-wearing at school, and ensuring classroom ventilation to the greatest extent possible. (October 2)  
  • The Department of Health released new guidance on school reopeningsThe guidance uses metrics to determine when schools should utilize remote learning, traditional classroom instruction, or a hybrid option. (September 18) 

State Higher Education:

  • A list of Hawaii colleges and universities planning to reopen in the fall can be found here. 

Produced by Marathon Strategies, an independent PR firm that delivers intelligent communications and research solutions. For information, email Phil Singer at COVID-19@marathonstrategies.com