OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The two new proposals from Mayor Kirk Caldwell regarding the homeless may be illegal, according to officials from the American Civil Liberties Union.
Last week, Mayor Caldwell proposed two new measures that would prevent the homeless from living and sleeping on Oahu's sidewalks. One would make it illegal to block a sidewalk anywhere on Oahu, and the other would make it a crime to live in a public place when shelter is available.
The mayor conceded that the proposals may be challenged, and officials with ACLU say they're watching closely.
"One thing we know from the courts is that you cannot criminalize someone's status, and with bills like this that seem to target people who are unsheltered, it seems to be quite close to that," said Joshua Wisch, executive director of ACLU Hawaii.
The ACLU will not sue immediately, but will wait to see what the Honolulu council does with the bills first, according to officials.