Travis.Thurston / Wikimedia Commons

HONOLULU — University of Hawaii graduate assistants have sued for the right to unionize and bargain for better pay and working conditions.

Catherine Cruz

Hotel workers in Waikiku as well as on the mainland took to the streets in an effort to flex their political muscle.

In San Francisco, police arrested 75 people during yesterday’s rally in front of Marriott’s Union Street hotel. In Boston, workers staged a sit-in on a city street, though there were no arrests.

A similar effort was tried in Waikiki but United Here workers ended up gathering on Kakalaua across from the Waikiki Marriott where union leaders announced they will take a strike vote on September 10th. 

Catherine Cruz

Labor Protests, Feather Cloak in Burned Museum; Impact Fees; New Release from Jake Shimabukuro


The Hawaii Government Employees Association represents close to 28,000 active members, as well as more than 12,000 retirees. It is closely watching the outcome of lawsuits filed on the mainland by some groups looking to claim back dues following the recent decision by the US Supreme court. That ruling, tied to first amendment arguments, allows public employees to opt out of paying union dues altogether.

Anthony Quintano / Flickr

JANUS Decision, Super PAC Spending, Monk Seal Pup, Wave Glider Drone

Courtesy of the State of Hawaii


The State of Hawaii has announced a new policy regarding the collection of so-called agency fees from non-members of public employee unions.


The policy, outlined in a memo from the State Comptroller, was spurred by last week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in the case of Janus v AFSCMEThat case, brought by Illinois state employee Mark Janus, overturned a precedent established in 1977 that allowed public unions to collect dues from all public employees, regardless of their membership status in the union.

Supreme Court Rules on Union Dues

Jun 28, 2018
Christian Fern

This week’s Supreme Court decision in the case known as Janus vs. AFSCME is expected to have a far-reaching impact on the union movement in America, but observers disagree as to what that impact will be. To some, it’s a much-needed adjustment to the way unions operate; to others, it’s a critical blow to the future of organized labor and to collective bargaining. The decision states that public sector employees who are not union members cannot be required to pay the so-called “agency fees” that are taken out of their paychecks.

The Conversation: Thursday, June 28th, 2018

Jun 28, 2018
Daderot / Wikimedia Commons

Impact of Supreme Court Ruling on Unions; CBD Treatment for Seizures; Saving Maui’s Silverswords; Strategy 360

The Conversation: Monday, November 27th, 2017

Nov 27, 2017
Wikimedia Commons

Big Island Coffee Bean Theft; Increase in Waikiki Violence; Public Sector UnionsMy Mother Said, Watch Out for Those French Girls

The Conversation: Thursday, September 7th, 2017

Sep 7, 2017
Public Domain Pictures

Flood Insurance Maps; Life Under Threat from North Korea; Unions in Hawaii   


Wayne Yoshioka

The State Legislature must reinstate hundreds of civil service positions that were abolished over the years. That process is only beginning as HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka reports.


Hawai‘i remains a relative stronghold for unions.  In fact, according to recent figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is one of the most unionized states in America. Pacific Business News Editor in Chief A. Kam Napier has part of the story behind the numbers.

Kaiser Strikers Hit The Picket Line

Feb 4, 2015
Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

It’s day four of the Unite Here Local 5 strike and hundreds of Kaiser workers continue to picket outside clinics across the state. HPR’s Molly Solomon was there and has this report.

A Look Back at Hawaii's Labor History

Sep 2, 2013
Hawaii State Archives
Hawaii State Archives

For most people, Labor Day means the last long weekend of summer. But for others, it’s a day to honor our nation’s workforce. HPR’s Molly Solomon sheds some light on what it means for Hawaii.