Traditional Practices

15 items

What is a Ka Paʻakai analysis?

By Ashley K. Obrey, Senior Staff Attorney The “Ka Paʻakai” analysis is a legal framework that government agencies must follow when considering proposals that may impact the exercise of Native Hawaiian traditional and customary rights. Developed by the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court in Ka Paʻakai O Ka ʻĀina v. Land Use Comm’n, the three-part inquiry operationalizes constitutional protections for Native Hawaiian rights by requiring that state and county agencies conduct detailed investigations and make specific findings as to: The identity and scope of valued cultural historical, or natural resources in the…area, including the extent to which traditional customary native Hawaiian rights are ...

June 10, 2024|Categories: Access Rights, Ask NHLC, Traditional Practices|Tags: |

What is Huamakahikina?

Every spring, the week-long Merrie Monarch Festival celebrates King David Kalākaua and his legacy of reinstating the public practice of hula after it had been outlawed in the 1830s. In honor of this year’s 61st Merrie Monarch Festival, we are using this month’s column to provide general information about the Huamakahikina Declaration on the Integrity, Stewardship, & Protection of Hula. What is Huamakahikina? Huamakahikina is a coalition of Kumu Hula from Hawaiʻi, the continental United States, and various countries around the world and recognizes that Kumu Hula have a unique kuleana to the integrity, stewardship, and protection of hula. All ...

April 11, 2024|Categories: Ask NHLC, Traditional Practices|Tags: , |

Hawai‘i Law Restricting Midwives Challenged in Court

Native Hawaiian midwives and others sue state to block law that prevents them from serving communities in traditional ways. Today, the Center for Reproductive Rights and the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation filed a case in the First Circuit Court of Hawai‘i challenging a new Midwifery Restriction Law that is preventing pregnant people in Hawai‘i from using skilled midwives for their pregnancies and births, as they have for generations. The Midwifery Restriction Law also endangers constitutionally protected Native Hawaiian traditional birthing practices. The nine plaintiffs include 3 midwives and 3 midwifery students who, under the Restriction Law, could now face criminalization for ...

February 27, 2024|Categories: Birthing, Traditional Practices|Tags: , |

The legacy of Clarabal v. the Department of Education

Six years ago this month, the first Hawaiian language rights case was heard by the Hawai‘i Supreme Court, Clarabal v. Department of Education. The oral argument was conducted in early February 2018, a month in which ‘ōlelo Hawai‘i is honored and celebrated.  At the heart of the case were two schoolchildren on Lāna‘i who were prohibited from communicating in ‘ōlelo Hawai‘i in the classroom. The Hawai‘i Supreme Court was asked by the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation (NHLC) to decide that the State had a constitutional duty to provide reasonable and equal access to a Hawaiian language medium education to these ...

February 23, 2024|Categories: Traditional Practices|Tags: |

ICA Rules KUA & NHLC Can Continue Fight for Limu

Decision Honors Uncle Henry Chang’s Last Wishes To Protect Marine Resources in ‘Ewa In 2012, Uncle Henry Chang Wo, a recognized loea limu (limu expert), and the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation (NHLC) began a long—and still pending—legal battle against permitting to increase stormwater runoff from the Kaloʻi Gulch onto an ‘Ewa shoreline. Permit proponents, including the City and County of Honolulu, the Department of Hawaiian Homelands, and the University of Hawaii, want the permit, so that polluted storm water can be discharged from urban development. Uncle Henry argued that the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) needed to more ...

November 14, 2023|Categories: Mālama ʻĀina, Traditional Practices|Tags: , |

Ask NHLC: How do courts decide what words in ‘ōlelo Hawai‘i mean?

Interpreting the meaning of language is central to the work of all courts in all parts of the world. Whether it be words used by governments in laws, orders, and rules; words used by parties when making agreements, or words used to show the mental state and intent of someone accused of a crime, determining what words mean – and how that impacts a legal outcome – is a core function of judges. Here in Hawaiʻi, the usage, meaning, and interpretation of ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi has affected the outcome of cases and guided our law. Generally, there are a few methods ...

1st Meeting of Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM) Since Maui Wildfires

On September 19, 2023, the Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM) held its first meeting following Maui’s wildfires, the governor’s temporary suspension of the water code, and the controversial “redeployment” of CWRM’s Deputy Director Kaleo Manuel following an August 8, 2023 request by West Maui Land Co. to divert water from streams to fill the company’s reservoirs to fight the wildfires, which he did not immediately grant. NHLC submitted testimony and attended the meeting. The meeting drew a large contingent of Maui residents in-person and online who passionately shared their concerns over the course of more than 10 hours. ...

September 22, 2023|Categories: Access Rights, Traditional Practices, Water Rights|

Hawaiʻi Supreme Court Oral Argument on Mauna Kea

Today is the first day of Native American Heritage Month, and NHLC was at the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court arguing that the government’s constitutional duty to protect Native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices applies in the promulgation of administrative rules, an issue that’s been raised in one of our cases related to Mauna Kea. In Hawaiʻi the State "shall" protect Hawaiian traditional and customary practices. NHLC stands with the lāhui and cultural practitioners to defend this fundamental right. Watch the Supreme Court Oral Argument: Read the Star Advertiser (11/2/22) article here: Hawaiʻi’s high court hears arguments tied to Mauna Kea ...

November 1, 2022|Categories: Access Rights, Traditional Practices|

NHLC Requests Additional NSF Scoping Hearings

After observing that many individuals and communities were unable to provide comment during the NSF’s limited scoping hearings regarding its environmental study on whether to fund the TMT project, NHLC has formally requested additional hearings should NSF continue to consider funding TMT over community objections. Read more here: Mauna Kea FAQ

August 19, 2022|Categories: Access Rights, Traditional Practices, Water Rights|
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