Citizens for Equal Rights is Producing a Photo Booklet of Civil Union/HB444 Supporters

Media Release:

Citizens for Equal Rights is producing a photo booklet of equal rights and civil union/HB444 supporters. The booklet will be distributed to House members to show mainstream community support for civil unions. See the message on the right, or go to

HB444 supporters, please send in your photo today to:

Aloha! As you know, advocates for civil unions have not given up on passing H.B. 444 this session. But it does seem like a long-shot, unless we can show main­stream community support for HB444.

Here’s the situation. In January the senate passed HB444 back to the House, where its final vote was postponed indefinitely. Among the 33 civil union supporters in the House last session, several were against voting on the bill because they saw no point in passing HB444 if it might be vetoed. However, if 26 house members wanted a vote on HB444 before the end of the session (April 29), it could happen. Information on HB444 and the rights/benefits it provides are online at www.equali­

No one knows whether the governor will exercise a veto, but the absence of any hint of veto has led many to believe the governor will allow the bill to become law without her approval. A majority of the 51-member house is 26 and a veto override requires 34 votes.

This month, we have a chance of fulfilling Hawaii’s legacy of equal rights and oppor­tunity for all. But to seek a vote on HB444, house members need to feel confident of community support for this bill. They want to know that community leaders, like you, will support their HB444 vote at this year’s elections.

So here’s our plan. We have formed a new group called Citizens For Equal Rights. CFER is planning to produce a booklet with photos of community members who support HB444. The booklet will be distributed to House members — grouped by community sector with 15-20 photos per page, for example: business, labor, civic, law, religion, education, health care, construction, real estate, sports, and other categories.

Would you be willing to appear in this booklet? Accepting this invitation would mean that you will go public with your support of civil unions in Hawai’i and the end of discrimination against gay and lesbian couples. To bolster community sup­port for HB444, CFER is also planning to run some newspaper ads and we’ll seek prior approval of any photos used in ads.

If you accept this invitation, could you email your photo and occupation (and title, if applicable) to We would also appreciate your asking friends and associates if they would be willing to go public with their support of equal rights and civil unions.

Whatever you can do would be most appreciated. Thank you.


Citizens for Equal Rights

One Response

  1. The pro-civil union group CFER will not be involved in any effort to change lawmakers, as might be implied in today’s Star Bulletin article at No offense to Jo-Ann Adams, but Citizens for Equal Rights is is staying with a positive message, even if HB444 does not pass…which we hope it will. All we want to do is allow people around the state to stand up for equal rights, and show that in a photo booklet of supporters of civil unions and HB444.

    Citizens for Equal Rights

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