People's Congress STATEWIDE CONVENing

HELD DECEMBER 3 & 4, 2016


KUPU Net Shed

Waterfront at Kewalo Basin
1125 Ala Moana Blvd.
Honolulu, HI 96813


December 3rd      December 4th



8:00 - 8:30am Breakfast + Registration

8:30 - 9:00am Opening Pule and Overview - Hawane Rios

9:00 - 9:20am  Opening Speaker(s) - Kamana Beamer

Kamanamaikalani Beamer, Ph.D is the former president and CEO of The Kohala Center. Beamer also served as a member of the faculty at the Hui 'Āina Momona Program at the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a joint appointment in the Richardson School of Law and the Hawai'inuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge.  He served as director of 'Āina-Based Education at Kamehameha Schools and a director of Stanford University's First Nations Futures Institute, a resource management development program for indigenous leaders.

Since 2000, Beamer and his ohana have revitalized and maintained taro ponds in Waipio Valley, providing him and his children opportunities to mālama 'āina, deepen connections with cultural traditions and derive leadership lessons from the land.  In 2013 he was nominated by Gov. Neil Abercrombie and confirmed by the Senate to a four-year appointment on Hawaii's Commission of Water Resource Management. In 2014 Beamer published No Mākou ka Mana: Liberating the Nation, which received the Samuel M. Kamakau Book of the Year Award from the Hawaii Book Publishers Association.  Kamana is the son of Kapono Beamer, a Grammy-nominated recording artist and Hawaiian slack key guitar virtuoso, and grandson of Nona Beamer, Native Hawaiian educator and master of ancient hula.

9:20 - 9:30am PoetryJamaica Osorio 

9:30 - 9:40am Recap from Island Forums

9:45 - 10:45am  Towards Solidarity. Solidarity Panel with Marti Townsend, Ikaika Hussey, Eric Gil, Mireille Ellsworth, Kat Brady, Clare Hanusz, and Tiare Lawrence.

People's Congress coalition leaders discuss the importance and power of solidarity in the new national context. 

11:00 - 12:30pm Workshop Breakouts

Workshop #1 - Environmental Justice Workshop.  Facilitated by Marti Townsend of Sierra Club of Hawai‘i.

Workshop #2 - Youth-led Activism.  Youth share what ignited their activism in Mauna Kea/TMT movement, Aikea & Pacific Tongues, followed by a group discussion about what our priorities should be with regard to youth and political agency in this "new" political landscape.

Workshop #3 - Affordable Housing Panel.  Hawaii has the highest cost of housing in the country. It’s no wonder that houselessness is on the rise and our families are fleeing to the mainland. Learn about how we can use the power of our personal stories to organize our communities to fight for truly affordable housing. Facilitated by Paola Rodelas and Gavin Thornton of Appleseed Center for Law and Economic Justice.

Workshop #4 - Advocacy and Criminal Justice Reform. Facilitated by Kat Brady of Community Alliance on Prisons. 


12:30 - 2:30pm Lunch

2:30 - 4:30pm Workshop Breakouts

Workshop #5 - Facing Trump from Margin to Center. This panel will center the voices of Hawai'i's most marginalized communities to examine the threat of the Trump administration and so-called alt-right movement. The panel will include strategizing around short-term and long term plans to create the best conditions to thrive under oppressive circumstances and to build collaborative resistance during the next four years and beyond. Moderated by Cu Ri Lee.

Workshop # 6 - Inside/Outside: Strategizing Around Government Politics and Organizing Beyond its Limits.  Join us for a conversation about challenges and best practices for political engagement in Hawaiʻi. Panelists will discuss a range of approaches, including strategizing around electoral politics and organizing to create radical political alternatives. Moderated by Hawane Rios.

Workshop #7 - Food Futures. This panel will discuss the future of agriculture in Hawai‘i, the recent 9th Circuit Federal Appeals Court decisions, and strategy at the state level in 2017.

4:30 - 5:30pm Group Strategy Session

5:30 - 7:30pm Dinner Reception and "Creative Disruption with Artist Solomon Enos"


Sunday, DECEMBER 4th 2016

8:00 - 8:30am Breakfast

8:30 - 9:00am Opening (Recap and Overview for the Day)

9:00 - 9:45am Solidarity with Standing Rock (Live video with protectors from the camp)

10:00-11:30am - Workshop Breakouts

Workshop #8 - Preferred Futures in Public Education.  

A group discussion with educators about ideas on preferred futures in public education, given the challenges and opportunities posed by our "new" political landscape. Community leaders will lead conversations on shared aspirations around education that challenge the status quo in fundamental ways.


  • Kaleikoa Ka‘eo, Associate Professor of Hawaiian Studies
  • Ku Kahakalau, Native Hawaiian educator and researcher
  • Corey Rosenlee, HSTA President

Workshop #9 - The Connecting Thread: Money in Politics, Nationally and What We Can Do Locally. Speakers from MAYDAY.US and Common Cause Hawai‘i will update us on the national fight work to reclaim democracy from excessive corporate campaign spending, as well as share stories of what city and counties have done to limit the influence of Big Money in their elections. 

 Workshop #10 - Economic Justice: Living Wages and Tax Policy.  

Hawai‘i is the second worst state in the nation in terms of taxing people into poverty. Our lowest-income households pay almost twice as much of their income (over 13%) in taxes as those in the top fifth (who pay 8% or less). We will discuss what “economic justice” could look like in Hawai‘i. What are the current effects of income inequality? How can minimum wage and changes to tax policies help Hawai‘i's working families?


  • Ray Catania, Labor, peace and social justice activist
  • Nicole Woo, Senior Policy Analyst with Hawai‘i Appleseed Center for Law and Economic Justice
  • Eric Gill, Unite Here! Local 5 Union and AiKea Movement
  • Deborah Zysman, Hawai‘i Children's Action Network

Workshop #11 - Tactical Organizing Workshop. Skills training for organizers and activists.

12:00-1:15pm Lunch

1:30-3:00pm Work on The People’s Agenda

3:00-4:00pm Closing remarks, Calls to action, Next steps

For more information, please contact: Tiare Lawrence, People's Congress Project Coordinator,