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Ka‘ū News Briefs, Sunday, May 3, 2020

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Kumu Debbie Ryder, singing with maile lei, Ty Chun, Makana Kamahele, and Terry Lewis, accompanied the students 
at May Day for Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary School in 2019. This year, the pandemic put a pause on all May Day
 activities. See more in The Way We Were story, below. Photo by Julia Neal
       See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar directory for farms, ranches, takeout.

WILL THE INTERISLAND BAN ON TRAVEL without 14 days of quarantine be lifted soon, giving Hawaiʻi residents almost exclusive air travel within the state?
     Not sure. In the meantime, this week, Hawaiian Airlines rolls out protocol for distancing and for cleaning its fleet of planes, and will require everyone to wear face masks. Hawaiian Air released a statement on new standards.
     Hawaiian Airlines enhances health measures by requiring travelers to wear face coverings starting Friday, May 8 and creating more personal space at check-in, boarding, and during flights. Airport employees and flight attendants wear face masks. Last month, Hawaiian Air began electrostatic spraying of cabins for more protection against coronaviruses.
     Peter Ingram, president and CEO at Hawaiian Airlines, said, "Taking care of our guests and employees has always been our primary focus, and these new health measures will help us maintain a safe travel experience, from our lobbies to our cabins, as Hawaiʻi continues to make progress in containing COVID-19. We appreciate our guests' understanding and flexibility as we adapt our operations with their wellbeing guiding every decision we make."
     Effective May 8, passengers will be required to effectively cover the mouth and nose. The coverings are required from check-in at the airport to deplaning at destination. Young children unable to keep a face covering on, or guests with a medical condition or disability preventing its use, will be exempted from the policy.
     More personal space is provided between passengers at check-in, boarding, and during the flight.
The airline will modify boarding by asking guests to remain seated at the gate area until rows are called. Main Cabin guests will board from the rear of the aircraft, in groups of three to five rows at a time, and agents will pause boarding as needed to prevent congestion. Guests who require special assistance and those seated in First Class will be able to pre-board.
Hawaiian Airlines electrostatically sprays the interiors of its interisland planed every night and its
transpacific planes between flights. The chemicals used are approved for disinfecting hospitals.
Photo from Hawaiian Airlines
     Beginning next week, the airline - which has been manually assigning seats to increase personal space onboard - will begin blocking middle seats on its jets, adjoining seats on ATR 42 turboprop aircraft, and other, select seats to continue to provide more space for guests and flight attendants. Depending on load factors, seating may need to be adjusted at the gate to maximize spacing throughout the cabin, and meet weight and balance restrictions.
     Hawaiian will make efforts to seat families and guests traveling in the same party together, whenever possible, and encourages guests who prefer to sit together to contact the airline ahead of the flight or see an airport agent.
     Keeping Spaces Clean: Last month, Hawaiian began using electrostatic spraying to comprehensively and evenly clean aircraft cabins with hospital-grade disinfectants, registered with the Environmental Protection Agency, that coat hidden and hard-to-reach surfaces. Electrostatic treatment dries in five minutes. Hawaiian sprays it nightly on Boeing 717 aircraft it operates on flights between the islands, and prior to each departure from Hawai‘i on Airbus A330s that serve transpacific routes. The airline's A321 neo fleet is currently not in service due to a reduced flying schedule.
     Hawaiian's fleet is equipped with HEPA air filters that create a dry and essentially sterile environment inhospitable to viruses. In addition, the airline intensified detailed cleaning and disinfecting protocols, paying special attention to high-touch areas such as seats, seatbacks, headrests, monitors, tray tables, overhead bins, walls, windows, and shades, as well as galleys and lavatories.
     Hawaiian also distributes sanitizing wipes to passengers and has temporarily adjusted certain in-flight services, such as suspending the refilling of beverages in cups or personal bottles, and hot towel service.
Face coverings will be required from airport check-in to leaving the airport when flying Hawaiian Airlines.
Photo from Hawaiian Airlines
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

MARSHALLESE ETHNICITY INVOLVING THE COVID-19 MCDONALD'S outbreak among employees and their families at three Kona restaurants was mentioned in recent state legislative hearings. The identity by ethnic group drew criticism from a Marshallese community organization, according to a story by Chelsea Jensen in Sunday's West Hawaiʻi Today. She reported on a joint statement from Big Island Marshallese Community Association President Taruo Abner, Vice President Charles Kelan, and member Meetu Kelen. They wrote that identifying the victims of the McDonald's outbreak was discriminatory because no other reporting on ethnicity occurred during the pandemic.
     Dr. Bruce Anderson, Director of the state Department of Health, revealed the ethnicity, apparently when pressed by the state Senate Special Committee on COVID-19. He mentioned Marshallese employees and their families living in two places becoming ill. "This Marshallese community in the Kona area... basically were in living situations where they couldn't effectively isolate themselves," said the health director.
     West Hawaiʻi Today reported that Association member Meetu Kelen said, "Now everybody is looking at us, and we're feeling small, but we don't want our community to feel that. We want to be part of this community." Kelen said the community is target to prejudice from the public. "They think we don't  know anything, that we're spreading the virus." She said the Marshallese are practicing distancing and washing hands like others.
Dr. Neal Palafox and Marshallese leader in Ocean View, Johnathan Jackson, work on health care for
the Marshallese community. Photo by Julia Neal
     Department of Health responded: "The Hawaiʻi Department of Health sincerely apologizes for any offense that may have been taken when race and ethnicity was mentioned related to those affected by COVID-19. The department was apprised of these concerns and will strive to use sensitivity when mentioning race. Please know that the intent was to express concern for those groups or populations that are disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and the need to build awareness about protecting those who may be at greater risk." The statement emphasized that "recent outbreaks were described to emphasize the need to physically and socially distance ourselves when we are sick.
     "We've seen from national data that Pacific Islanders are affected by COVID-19 at higher rates than other groups, and this is a high concern in Hawaiʻi. We need to protect those at higher risk and ensure they have the knowledge and tools to protect themselves."
     Both the community association and health department said they are working with the Marshallese community to spread more education about the disease.
     In Ocean View, outreach workers are also communicating with Marshallese residents, who often live in large family groups. Ocean View Marshallese leader Johnathan Jackson and U.H. Medical School professor, Dr. Neal Palafox, who specializes in Marshallese health, are working on improving health care. They both spoke at last year's Kaʻū Rural Health Community Association's annual meeting. There have been no reported cases of COVID-19 in the Marshallese community in Kaʻū.
     See a story on the high rate of infection of Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, as described by University of Hawaiʻi Medical School, in Saturday's Kaʻū News Briefs.

Ocean View youth signed up with Boys & Girls Club Big Island are
receiving deliveries of food on weekdays. BGCBI photo
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

BOYS & GIRLS CLUB'S FEEDING PROGRAM for students and kūpuna received statewide television coverage during the past week. See the KHON2 story. The program feeds many Marshallese and Native Hawaiian children who are members of the Boys & Girls Club in Ocean View. They are fed five days a week, as school campuses are closed and the weekday meetings at Ocean View Community Center are called off until after the pandemic.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

AN UPTICK IN READING during the Stay-At-Home requirement for the pandemic has prompted Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries to provide a free book exchange so Kaʻū readers can access reading material. Currently, free books are available at the laundromat in Nāʻālehu. Patrons are invited to take the books they want and pass them on to another reader or return them to the laundromat when finished reading them. The book selection will be replenished frequently. Soon, Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries will provide another free book exchange site in Ocean View, said its President, Linda Morgan.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

FOURTEEN DAYS OF FOOD for those in need will be available at Nāʻālehu Shopping Center tomorrow, Monday, May 4 from  to . Distributed by The Food Basket, those who attend are asked to stay in their cars. Call The Food Basket, 933-6030.

No COVID-19 cases so far in the zip code areas of Volcano, 
Pāhala, and Ocean View. White indicates zero cases, light 
yellow indicates one to five cases. The 96772 area in 
Kaʻū has one case recorded. Map from DOH
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

ONE NEW CASE OF COVID-19 was reported for Hawaiʻi Island today. Of 74 victims, as counted by the state Department of Health, 63 were released from isolation. The remainder are quarantined at home and monitored by DOH. There was one overnight hospitalization and no one died on this island.

     In the daily message from Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense, Director Talmadge Magno said, "For your information, The Food Basket will be conducting a food drop off service tomorrow, May 4th at the Nāʻālehu Shopping Center. To the multitude of people and organizations contributed to this statewide food drop off program, Mahalo Nui Loa. This is the specialness of Hawaiʻi." He also thanked the organizations that are conducting free COVID-19 testing around the island.
     "Be reminded the policies of stay at home, physical distancing, and gatherings remains in effect. These policies all have one major goal, that is to help stop the spreading of the virus or from getting it. This is why, you are asked to please wear a mask. Thank you for listening and have a safe Sunday. This is your Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense," said Magno.

     Statewide, two new cases were reported today by DOH, bringing the state's case count to 620. The state death toll remains  on Oʻahu and five on Maui. The recovery rate is about 88 percent, with 544 people released from isolation.

     In the United States, more than 1.18 million cases have been confirmed. Recovery is about 153,000. The death toll is 68,276.
     Worldwide, more than 3.5 million have contracted COVID-19. Recovery has exceeded 1.12 million people. The death toll is 247,497.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Pāhala Elementary students performed a Hukilau Hula, throwing nets to the sea, at last year's May Day celebration. 
Photo by Julia Neal

Kaʻū Life: The Way We Were Last Year
     This time last year, Kaʻū District Gym was filled with families and the public, entertained by the school's classes and May Day Court and attendants. The May Day Court and attendants were comprised of Kaʻū High
Keiki from PāhalaElementary School sang for the public at the
May Day celebration last year. Photo by Julia Neal
School students. Hula and song were presented by PāhalaElementary School students. The program was directed by Pāhala Kumu Hula Debbie Ryder with assistance from local musicians Makana Kamahele, Ty Chun, and Terry Lewis.
     During the event, the May Day Court welcomed the Queen and King. A Hukilau Hula featured keiki throwing nets to the sea.             When school is open on campus, Ryder teaches hula in all of the preschool, kindergarten, and elementary school grades in Pāhala.
     At the May Day celebration last year, preschool students performed a sitting Baby Doll Hula. Another young class of students performed a sitting hula as the May Day court watched.

     May Day has been a tradition for many generations of students attending school on the Pāhala campus. This year's May Day was canceled due to COVID-19 spread mitigation.
Pāhala preschool students performed a sitting Baby Doll Hula at last year's May Day celebration. Photo by Julia Neal


To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

directory for farms, ranches, takeout. Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is 
free, with 7,500 distributed on stands and to all postal addresses throughout 
Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano throughout the district. Read online at 
kaucalendar.com and facebook.com/kaucalendar. To advertise your 
business or your social cause, contact kaucalendarads@gmail.com.
Daily, weekly, and monthly recurring Kaʻū and Volcano Events, Meetings, Entertainment, Exercise, Meditation, and more are listed at kaucalendar.com. However, all non-essential activities are canceled through the end of May.

MOST EVENTS ARE CANCELLED to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus. The state is under a stay-at-home order, with l4 days of quarantine required for anyone coming into the state. Interisland travel is restricted. Those in Hawaiʻi should stay at home unless needing to obtain food or medical care.

ONGOING
Free COVID-19 Screenings are at Bay Clinic during business hours, with appointment. Call 333-3600.
     Beginning Wednesday, May 6, a testing team from Aloha Critical Care in Kona will provide testing at St. Jude's every other Wednesday.
     The next drive-thru screening  at Nāʻālehu Community Center will be held Wednesday, May 13 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Screening will be carried out by Aliʻi Health, with support from County of Hawai‘i COVID-19 Task Force, Premier Medical Group and Pathways Telehealth.
     Wearing masks is required for everyone.
     To bypass the screening queue at community test sites, patients can call ahead to Pathways Telehealth, option 5 at 808-747-8321. The free clinic will also offer on-site screening to meet testing criteria. Physicians qualify those for testing, under the guidance of Center for Disease Control and Hawaiʻi's COVID-19 Response Task Force.
     Those visiting screening clinics will be asked to show photo ID, and any health insurance cards – though health insurance is not required to be tested. They are also asked to bring their own pen to fill in forms.
     For further information, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.

Free Breakfast and Lunch for Anyone Eighteen and Under is available at Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary and at Nāʻālehu Elementary weekdays through May. Each youth must be present to receive a meal. Service is drive-up or walk-up, and social distancing rules (at least six feet away) are observed. Breakfast is served 7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m., lunch from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Food is being delivered to Ocean View.

St. Jude's Episcopal Church Soup Kitchen is open, with a modified menu and increased health & safety standards, every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Hot showers, the computer lab, and in-person services and bible studies are suspended. Services are posted online on Sundays at stjudeshawaii.org.

The Food Basket Food Pantries Distribution, where families can receive 14 days of food per family:

     The Ocean View location for May is KahukuPark on Monday, May 11, 10 a.m. to noon. Call The Food Basket, 933-6030.
     The Nāʻālehu location is Nāʻālehu Shopping Center Monday, May 4, 10 a.m. to noon. Call The Food Basket, 933-6030. The next distribution is Sacred Heart Church at 95-558 Mamālahoa Hwy, under their Loaves and Fishes program, on Thursday, May 28 from  to  Call 928-8208.

     The Pāhala location is Kaʻū District Gym at 96-1149 Kamani Street, distributed by the ʻO Kaʻū Kākou Pantry, on Thursday, May 28 at  Call The Food Basket, 933-6030.
     The Volcano location is Cooper Center at 19-4030 Wright Road Wednesday, May 27 from 11 a.m. until food runs out. Call Kehau at 443-4130.


On Call Emergency Box Food Pantry is open at Cooper Center Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to noon. Call 967-7800 to confirm.

The Next Learning Packet and Student Resource Distribution for Nāʻālehu Elementary School Students will be Monday, May 11. The packets are designed for learning at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, and can be picked up every two weeks. One family member may pick up for several students in the same family. Students need not be present for the learning resources to be retrieved. Please note the grade of each child. Distribution times are organized by the first letter of the student's last name at the site closest to their home. Supplies will be given out simultaneously.
     Everyone is asked to observe social distancing rules, staying 6 feet away from others during pick-up. See the school website, naalehuel.hidoe.us, for more information and updates.
     Distribution at Nāʻālehu Elementary has pick-up from 8 a.m - 8:20 a.m. for A-H;  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.

     Distribution at Discovery Harbour Community Center has pick-up from 8 a.m - 8:20 a.m. for A-H;  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.

     Distribution at Ocean View Mālama Market has pick-up from  for A-H,  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.

     Distribution at Ocean View Community Center has pick-up from  for A-H,  for I-P, and  for Q-Z.
     Those who come to campus to pick up free student breakfasts are encouraged to also pick up their packets at the same time.


Register for Volcano's ʻŌhiʻa Lehua Half Marathon, 10K, 5K, and Keiki Dash by Wednesday, July 22. The second annual event will be held on Saturday, July 25. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to University of Hawaiʻi for furthering research of Rapid ‘Ōhiʻa Death and The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences. See webscorer.com to register.

     Half Marathon registration is $70 through May 24, $80 May 25 through July 22, and $90 for late registration. Registration for the 10K is $50 through May 24, $55 May 25 through Jul 22, and $60 for late registration. Registration for the 5K is $35 through May 24, $40 May 25 through July 22, and $45 for late registration. Keiki Dash registration is $10. All registrations are non-transferable and non-refundable.
     Late registration is only available at packet pickup or race day morning. Shirts are not guaranteed for late registration.  Race Shirts will be included for Half Marathon and 10K participants only. For all other participants, shirts are available to purchase online.
     Packet pick-up is scheduled for Thursday, July 23 in Hilo; Friday, July 26 in Volcano; and Saturday, July 27,  at the race start.
     Half Marathon will start at  Other distances follow shortly after. Keiki Dash will begin at  on VSAS grounds, with the option of one or two laps – about 300 meters or 600 meters. Race cut-off time for the Half Marathon is four hours. The races will begin and end in Volcano Village at VSAS.
     See ohialehuahalf.com.

Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium Closed for Renovation through June 30. The Park is closed until further notice due to COVID-19 spread mitigation. A popular seven-and-a-half minute 2018 eruption video will be shown on a television in the exhibits area, once the Park and center reopen, and is available online for free download.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.



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