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  • Writer's pictureHawaiʻi State Senate

LEGISLATURE PASSES SILVER ALERT BILL TO PROTECT VULNERABLE COMMUNITY MEMBERS

On Wednesday, May 1, 2024, the Hawaiʻi State Legislature unanimously passed Senate Bill 2305 SD2 HD2 CD1 to establish a Silver Alert Program to help locate and safeguard missing persons who are particularly vulnerable, including community members who are elderly or are cognitively impaired or developmentally disabled.

 

“Establishing a Silver Alert program will provide many benefits to our community and especially for our kūpuna who go missing,” said Senator Brandon Elefante (Senate District 16, ‘Aiea, ‘Aiea Heights, Hālawa, Pearlridge, Newtown, Royal Summit, Waimalu, Waiau, Momilani, Pacific Palisades, and Pearl City), introducer of SB 2305. “I am grateful to collaborate with Representative Cory Chun who introduced the House companion bill and all the advocates who have supported this bill throughout the legislative process. With an aging population in Hawaiʻi, this is an important tool that can be used to locate our kūpuna.”

 

More than half of states nationwide have established Silver Alert programs modeled after the AMBER Alert program. There are many emergency situations where the use of these broadcast systems could save lives by helping to identify missing individuals with cognitive impairments, or developmental disabilities, or who are the elderly.  However, there is currently no statutory process that requires its use.

 

“The Silver Alert is a step forward in prioritizing safety for our kūpuna and vulnerable individuals.  Losing a loved one who wanders off can be the most terrifying situation for families and caregivers, but today we are not only giving them hope – but also the tools needed to locate their loved ones,” said Representative Cory Chun (House District 35, Portions of Pearl City and Waipahu, Crestview.) “I want to thank the Alzheimer's Association of Hawaiʻi for championing this measure along with the State Council on Developmental Disabilities, Executive Office on Aging, as well as many other community and governmental agencies who have supported this cause for years.”

 

SB 2305 now advances to the Governor’s desk for consideration.

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