Press Releases

September 23, 2021

Hirono, Brownley Introduce Bill to Establish and Regularly Update Database of Veterans’ Demographic Data to Track Changing U.S. Veteran Population

WASHINGTON, DC - This week, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, introduced S. 2761, the Every Veteran Counts Act, legislation that directs the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to establish and regularly update a database of veterans' demographic data. The statutory changes in the Every Veteran Counts Act would allow VA to use best practices to keep itself, Congress, and the public apprised of veteran demographics on an ongoing basis. Cong… Continue Reading

September 20, 2021

Four Months After COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act Became Law, Hirono and Meng Ask DOJ for Updates on Implementation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Congresswoman Grace Meng (D-N.Y.) wrote to Attorney General Merrick Garland to ask for progress on reducing hate crimes and incidents, and the implementation of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, legislation that was introduced by Senator Hirono and Congresswoman Meng. The letter was sent four months after the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act was signed into law. It details key elements of the law that must be implemented to make progress comb… Continue Reading

September 14, 2021

Hirono Announces $28 Million in Department of Education Funding for Native Hawaiian Education Programs

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the U.S. Department of Education is awarding more than $28 million in 35 grants through the Native Hawaiian Education Program (NHEP). Grants are being awarded to various Native Hawaiian educational organizations, Native Hawaiian community-based organizations, and other similar organizations. "This funding will support Native Hawaiians across our state by providing support for Native Hawaiian students, parents, and teach… Continue Reading

August 20, 2021

Hirono, Sullivan Introduce Bill to Reunite Korean Americans with Family Members in North Korea

HONOLULU - Last week, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Senator Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) introduced the bipartisan Korean War Divided Families Reunification Act, legislation directing the U.S. Secretary of State to establish a formal process to help Korean American families reunite with family members that remain in North Korea. "For nearly seventy years, too many Korean Americans have been separated from their loved ones in North Korea. Carol Li, a constituent of mine from Honolulu, unders… Continue Reading

August 17, 2021

Food Basket to Receive $5 Million Grant for DA BUX Program

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the Hawaii Island food bank, The Food Basket, Inc., will receive $5 million in Nutrition Incentive Grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to continue to build capacity in the DA BUX Double Up Food Bucks program. "The COVID-19 pandemic reinforced the importance of investing in Hawaii's local food systems," Senator Hirono said. "The DA BUX program gets Hawaii-grown produce from farms to those who need it at an affordable … Continue Reading

August 16, 2021

Hirono Statement on Afghanistan

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, issued the following statement on the evolving conditions in Afghanistan: "A humanitarian crisis is unfolding before our eyes in Afghanistan. We are all witnessing the chaos at the Kabul airport. We must prioritize the evacuation of American citizens and our Afghan partners and their families who supported us during this 20-year war. "Afghan women and girls who will be targeted by the Taliba… Continue Reading

August 12, 2021

Hirono to IRS and Treasury: Make Sure Non-Filers Receive Expanded Child Tax Credit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) wrote to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner Charles Rettig today to ask how the Treasury and IRS are working to make sure that people who do not file federal income taxes but are eligible to receive the expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC) are getting their payments. This letter is sent as the second round of CTC payments is expected to be delivered to families tomorrow. The Senator noted that while mo… Continue Reading

August 11, 2021

Hirono: Budget Vote Sets the Stage to Support Working Families, Create Jobs, Address the Climate Crisis, Reduce Child Poverty

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) today voted to begin work to pass the American Families Plan, legislation that will support America's working families and small businesses while creating jobs, addressing the climate crisis, reducing child poverty, and investing in our education system. This legislation follows key investments Democrats made in the American Rescue Plan and its success at delivering relief to the American people earlier this year. "This vote sets the stage t… Continue Reading

August 10, 2021

Hirono Votes to Pass $1.2 Trillion Infrastructure Bill, Calls for Immediate Consideration of American Families Plan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Chair of the Energy Subcommittee, voted with her colleagues to pass the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act today. The sweeping legislation provides $1.2 trillion in federal investments that will address our country's roads and bridges, transit systems, internet, wildfires, water infrastructure, and more. "This historic investment in our nation's infrastructure means that communities across the country can address their longst… Continue Reading

August 06, 2021

Senators Hirono, Klobuchar, King, Smith, Merkley, Van Hollen Introduce Legislation to Address Maintenance Backlog at Agricultural Research Facilities

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Angus King (I-Maine), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) introduced the AG RESEARCH Act to address the multi-billion dollar maintenance backlog and modernization needs at various agricultural research facilities, including the University of Hawaii's College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), as well as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural R… Continue Reading

July 23, 2021

Hirono Secures New Provisions to Strengthen Window Safety Protections for Children Living in Military Housing in FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Chair of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower, successfully included new provisions in the FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would strengthen window safety protections for children living in military housing. These protections build on the legacy of Evan's Law - named after seven-year-old Hawaii resident Evan English - that required the installation window safety devices in military housing as part of the F… Continue Reading

July 22, 2021

Senator Hirono Secures $85 Million for HDR-H in Senate Armed Services Committee NDAA Markup for Fiscal Year 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced today that the Senate Armed Services Committee added an $85 million authorization for the Homeland Defense Radar-Hawaii (HDR-H) during its markup of the Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), rejecting the administration's decision to zero out funding in its budget request for the project. When completed, HDR-H will be a key component of our nation's ballistic missile defense system against evolving threats fro… Continue Reading

July 22, 2021

Hirono Announces More than $74 Billion for Navy and Marine Corps Programs in FY2022 National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Chair of the Senate Armed Services Seapower Subcommittee, announced that the Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes more than $74 billion for critical Navy and Marine Corps Programs. This includes over $2 billion in additional funds on top of the base budget for key programs identified by the Chief of Naval Operations and the Commandant of the Marine Corps on their unfunded priority lists, such as the restoration… Continue Reading

July 02, 2021

Hirono Proposes New Investments to Improve Opportunities for Women and Minorities to Pursue STEM Careers, Reintroduces Legislation to Promote and Support Diversity in STEM Pipeline

HONOLULU - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) introduced her plan to improve opportunities for women and minorities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. "Amid growing global economic competition, the United States cannot afford to ignore the barriers women and minorities face in pursuing STEM education and careers," Senator Hirono said. "These two bills would make key investments to unlock new pathways for women and people of color to pursue STEM education and care… Continue Reading

June 25, 2021

Hirono Introduces Bill to Make Key VA Information Accessible in 10 Most Common Non-English Languages

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, introduced the Veterans and Family Information Act, legislation that would require the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to make critical information it provides veterans and their families more accessible for non-English language speakers. An estimated 4.2 million veterans in the U.S. are foreign-born or the children of immigrants, a share of the veteran population that has been stead… Continue Reading

June 23, 2021

Hirono, Matsui Reintroduce Bicameral Bill to Boost Gender Equity in Education, Support Title IX

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Congresswoman Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) reintroduced the bicameral Patsy T. Mink and Louise M. Slaughter Gender Equity in Education Act (GEEA), legislation that would provide additional resources, training, and technical assistance to combat harassment and discrimination in education. "Trailblazers Patsy Mink and Louise Slaughter spent their careers demanding better opportunities for all Americans, regardless of their gender. This bill bui… Continue Reading

June 16, 2021

Hirono, Murray, Pocan, Scott Introduce Bill to Double Pell Grant, Make College More Affordable

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Patty Murray (D-Wash.), chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Representatives Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) and Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-Va.), chairman of the House Education & Labor Committee, reintroduced the Pell Grant Preservation and Expansion Act, legislation that would double the Pell Grant award, index the award to inflation, and make other changes to expand the award for working students an… Continue Reading

May 28, 2021

Hirono, Case, Womack Introduce Legislation to Restore Access Federal Benefits for COFA Citizens Legally Present in the United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Representative Ed Case (D-Hawaii), and Representative Steve Womack (R-Ark.) introduced bipartisan, bicameral legislation to restore access to a range of federal benefits for citizens of the Freely Associated States of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic of Palau who reside in the United States. Under the Compacts of Free Association (COFA), national security agreements critical to safe… Continue Reading

May 28, 2021

Hirono, Shaheen, Collins Call on President Biden to Take Immediate Action to Ensure Women’s Rights and Safety are Protected after Withdrawal from Afghanistan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), and Susan Collins (R-Maine) wrote to President Joe Biden urging him to take immediate action to ensure women's rights and safety are protected in the wake of the pending U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. Noting that protecting Afghan women and girls post-withdrawal will require a whole of government approach, the Senators urged the President to immediately appoint an Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues who… Continue Reading

May 27, 2021

Hirono Introduces Resolution Marking May as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) introduced a resolution marking May as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. The resolution highlights the contributions to our country by generations of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders. "This Asian Pacific American Heritage Month is particularly meaningful. As we celebrate the rich diversity and contributions of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders in our country, these very communities h… Continue Reading

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