I’ve grown up on Oahu and just within the past maybe 3 years, the homeless situation has grown out of hand.
There was a “No Sit No Lie” law that was passed but there doesn’t seem to be much change in anything. The homeless “camps” have doubled if not tripled in size. Every so often the cops will do a sweep and just throw away their belongings. This doesn’t seem to solve or help the problem at all; You throw away their items, they are just going to steal items from each other or from hard working individuals.
While I’m at work during the week, there’s a homeless ‘camp’ just across the street at a shut down restaurant- they just hang out there all day with their tarps and belongings all over the place just making house. It was also covering the sidewalk.
There used to be homeless living out of their vehicles just on the other side. Eventually all the vehicles got towed. This didn’t make the homeless people happy at all- in fact, the next day a couple set a fire to trash that was on the sidewalk.. and the fire caught to a nearby telephone pole as well a couple vehicles that were parked there. I witnessed this happen and it was scary as hell!
Down in Chinatown, they are all over the place. You can’t pass a bus stop or sidewalk without seeing someone asleep or tweeking. At nighttime, it’s even worse. They will sleep in the doorways of businesses while they are closed for the night. At A’Ala Park, there are so many tents and tarps that just line up the sidewalk and park.
At Kaka’ako where there is also a Children’s Discovery Center, it’s gotta be one of the larger homeless camps. Just streets lined with tents and tarps and carts.
All throughout the day, especially in town, Honolulu, you constantly see homeless people tweeking and yelling. It’s worse in town than any other area on Oahu. Except the west side, in Waianae- that’s where I first saw homeless camps in the brush. Randomly tucked away in the trees heading towards Yokohama Beach.
It’s just a tough situation to deal with. Some of them do not want the help, they just want to live free and rent free. Some ended up there not voluntarily, and do want the help but just don’t know what to do.
I really would like to know what tourists think when they come here and see these homeless camps.. and what they really think of Hawaii.