Press Releases

May 30, 2019

Senator Hirono Leads Resolution to Recognize May as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Last week, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), along with 22 of her U.S. Senate colleagues, introduced a resolution recognizing the significance of Asian Pacific American (APA) Heritage Month and the contributions of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. "APA Heritage Month is an opportunity to recognize the cultures, the trailblazers, and stories of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities in Hawaii and across the country," Se… Continue Reading

May 30, 2019

Following Meeting with USGS Director, Hirono Announces that Hawaiian Volcano Observatory will Remain Anchored on Hawaii Island

HONOLULU - Following a meeting with Dr. Jim Reilly, Director of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Senator Mazie K. Hirono announced that USGS has committed to keeping the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) on Hawaii Island. "The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is an integral part of the Hawaii Island community, as we saw when HVO scientists worked around the clock with first responders to provide critical information during last year's volcanic activity," Senator Hirono said. "It just makes sense… Continue Reading

May 24, 2019

Hirono Secures Hawaii Priorities in Fiscal Year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) fought successfully to include critical priorities for Hawaii in the FY2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill, which sets policy and funding levels for the Department of Defense and the national security programs of the Department of Energy, passed the Senate Armed Services Committee on a 25-2 vote. The full Senate will consider the legislation later this year. "This year's NDAA invests in Hawaii's economy, enhances our mil… Continue Reading

May 23, 2019

Hirono Secures Critical Funding and Resources for Hawaii in Senate-Passed Disaster Supplemental Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) successfully secured a number of provisions in the Bipartisan Disaster Supplemental Bill to assist individuals and communities in Hawaii impacted by natural disasters in 2018. The $19.1 billion measure passed the Senate on an 85-8 vote. "Last year's natural disasters seriously impacted thousands of Hawaii residents, and they have been waiting too long to receive federal assistance as they recover," Senator Hirono said. "This legislation wil… Continue Reading

May 22, 2019

Senators Hirono, Blunt, Collins, Klobuchar Introduce Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Yesterday, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) introduced the Adoptee Citizenship Act of 2019 - a bipartisan legislation to close a loophole in the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 that prevented internationally-adopted children from receiving U.S. citizenship despite being legally adopted by U.S. citizens. "Due to a loophole in the Child Citizenship Act, thousands of internationally-adopted children, who w… Continue Reading

May 22, 2019

Hirono, Case, Murkowski, Young Reintroduce Bicameral Legislation to Reunite Filipino World War II Veterans with Their Families

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) introduced the Filipino Veterans Family Reunification Act, a bill that would expedite the visa process for children of Filipino World War II veterans. Representatives Ed Case (D-Hawaii) and Don Young (R-Alaska) introduced companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives. "During World War II, Filipino soldiers stepped up and answered the call to service, fighting and sacrificing alongside Ameri… Continue Reading

May 17, 2019

Senators Hirono and Booker Lead in Introducing Legislation to Improve Sexual Health Education for Marginalized Youth

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), along with six of their U.S. Senate colleagues, introduced the Youth Access to Sexual Health Services (YASHS) Act. The YASHS Act would authorize the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to award grants that support access to sexual health services for marginalized youths, including medically accurate and complete, age, developmentally, and culturally appropriate sexual health information. Repres… Continue Reading

May 16, 2019

Senators Hirono, Menendez Lead Colleagues in Demanding Facebook do More to Block Gun Sales

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Earlier this month, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), and eight of their U.S. Senate colleagues sent a letter to Facebook to demand the social media giant do more to block gun sales facilitated on its social media enterprises, Facebook and Instagram. In their letter to Facebook Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the Senators asked for clarification and guidance from the company about its gun sales policies and how Facebook polices its own ban on gun sa… Continue Reading

May 15, 2019

Senator Hirono Urges Action Over Reports of FAS Citizens Denied REAL ID Act-Compliant Documents

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) sent a letter to Lee Francis Cissna, the Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and Chad Wolf, the Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Under Secretary at the Office of Strategy, Policy, and Plans, and urged them to take immediate action following recent reports of citizens of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau (the Freely Associated States… Continue Reading

May 15, 2019

Senator Hirono Announces Nearly $2.5 Million in Funding to the UH West Oahu

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that University of Hawaii West Oahu (UHWO) will receive nearly $2.5 million in support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to improve college readiness and success for Native Hawaiian high school and college students, and provide them with STEM learning opportunities through UHWO's summer bridge programs. "This NSF grant funding is a step in the right direction in providing our keiki with opportunities to participate … Continue Reading

May 09, 2019

Senators Hirono, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Study Impacts of Popular Sunscreen Chemicals

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Yesterday, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) introduced legislation to better inform the public about the effects that sunscreen chemicals have on coral reefs around the world. The Oxybenzone and Octinoxate Impact Study Act of 2019 would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to study the impacts of oxybenzone and octinoxate, two key chemicals found in sunscreen, on human health and the environment. "In Hawaii, we understand that our way… Continue Reading

May 08, 2019

Senator Hirono Demands Answers, Action Following Deadly Helicopter Crash on Oahu

WASHINGTON, D.C. - On Tuesday, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) sent letters to Robert L. Sumwalt, Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and Dan Elwell, the Acting Administrator at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), over safety concerns following a deadly helicopter crash last week in a residential area of Kailua, Oahu. On the morning of April 29, 2019, an air tour helicopter operated by Novictor Helicopters crashed on Oneawa Street in Kailua, resulting in the d… Continue Reading

May 07, 2019

Senators Hirono, Durbin Introduce Legislation to Protect Americans from Unwanted Robocalls

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Last week, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), along with U.S. Senators Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), and Tina Smith (D-Minn.), introduced the Protecting American Consumers from Robocalls Act. The bill would help end illegal robocalls in America "Robocalls have become an epidemic in this country, with Americans receiving an estimated 48 million robocalls last year alone. A recent study found people receive an… Continue Reading

May 03, 2019

Senator Hirono Applauds Patent and Trademark Office’s Decision to Extend Telework Program to Hawaii, Alaska

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) welcomed the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's (PTO's) announcement that it had extended its full-time telework program, the Telework Enhancement Act Pilot Program (TEAPP), to Hawaii and Alaska. The decision to extend TEAPP follows Senator Hirono's questioning of PTO Director Andrei Iancu during a March 13, 2019 hearing of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Intellectual Property about why Hawaii was excluded from th… Continue Reading

April 30, 2019

Senators Hirono, King Introduce Resolution to Designate April 30 as National Adult Hepatitis B Vaccination Awareness Day

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Today, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Angus King (I-Maine) introduced S.Res.177, a resolution supporting the designation of April 30, 2019, as "National Adult Hepatitis B Vaccination Awareness Day." Hepatitis B is a viral infection of the liver transmitted via infected blood and other body fluids and is a leading cause of liver cancer. "Over two million people in the United States are chronically infected with hepatitis B, and about 2,000 people die from hepatitis B-r… Continue Reading

April 30, 2019

Hirono, 11 Senators Call for DOJ Inspector General and Office of Professional Responsibility to Investigate Attorney General Barr’s Handling of the Mueller Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) led 11 Senators in urging Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz and Director of the Department of Justice's Office of Professional Responsibility Corey Amundson to investigate Attorney General William Barr's conduct while handling Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation and report. "Attorney General Barr's actions raise significant questions about his decision not to recuse himself from overseeing the Special Counse… Continue Reading

April 29, 2019

Senator Hirono Leads Bipartisan Letter in Support of Funding to Address Deferred Maintenance at Schools of Agriculture

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Earlier this month, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), along with nine of her colleagues, sent a bipartisan letter to the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations' Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies to request $50 million in funding to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for grants to address deferred maintenance at agricultural research facilities. This fu… Continue Reading

April 25, 2019

Hirono Highlights Important Role of Federal Funding in Clearing Hawaii’s Rape Kit Backlog, Building Future Testing Capacity

HONOLULU - In a visit to Honolulu Police Department (HPD) Headquarters today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono highlighted the important role federal funding played in helping Hawaii law enforcement clear a backlog of 1,500 untested rape kits statewide. In 2016, the Office of the Hawaii Attorney General successfully applied for, received, and utilized a $2 million grant under the U.S. Department of Justice's National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) to process untested rape kits over a three-year per… Continue Reading

April 24, 2019

Senators Hirono, Gillibrand, Daines Reintroduce Bipartisan Legislation to Assist Vietnam Veterans Exposed to Agent Orange

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Last week, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), and twenty-one of their U.S. Senate colleagues reintroduced the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act to ensure thousands of Navy veterans, known as "Blue Water" Navy veterans, would become eligible to receive Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation and health care benefits. The term "Blue Water" Navy veterans applies to those who served in the territorial sea… Continue Reading

April 23, 2019

Senator Hirono Announces Over $4.76 Million in AmeriCorps Funding for Three Hawaii Nonprofits

HONOLULU, HI - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that three Hawaii organizations have received over $4.76 million in AmeriCorps funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency responsible for AmeriCorps and other national service programs. Funding from CNCS will go to Kupu, Teach for America Hawaii, and the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii. "AmeriCorps members are an integral part of our communities - they provide critical support and help… Continue Reading

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