Special Report

Hawaii v. Parental Rights

Hawaii Sent At Least 10 Foster Children To An Abusive Home At The Center Of A Drug Ring Hawaii News Now

Hawaii Sent At Least 10 Foster Children To An Abusive Home At The Center Of A Drug Ring

Hawaii Child Welfare Services may have had no reason not to approve Yvonne and Paul Caitano as foster parents. But when did it find out that things had gone wrong?

Hawaii Judges Were Trained To Run Better Child Welfare Hearings. Their Performance Plummeted Ludwig Laab/Civil Beat/2021

Hawaii Judges Were Trained To Run Better Child Welfare Hearings. Their Performance Plummeted

The hearings can determine whether parents lose their children, but topics that could help avoid that are rarely or never discussed.

‘Just A Number’: Parents Who Face Losing Their Kids Say Court-Appointed Attorneys Don’t Do Enough Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

‘Just A Number’: Parents Who Face Losing Their Kids Say Court-Appointed Attorneys Don’t Do Enough

A Civil Beat review found that parents almost never win on appeal, and that the appellate court finds procedural flaws in half the cases.

Hawaii Senator Says Changes Are Needed To Curb ‘Illegal, Knee-Jerk’ Child Abuse Investigations Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

Hawaii Senator Says Changes Are Needed To Curb ‘Illegal, Knee-Jerk’ Child Abuse Investigations

Sen. Joy San Buenaventura is considering writing a bill that would likely reduce the number of children taken from their parents without a court order.

‘You Need A Warrant!’: Hawaii’s Dubious Practice Of Taking Children Without A Court Order Courtesy: Jennifer Chapman

‘You Need A Warrant!’: Hawaii’s Dubious Practice Of Taking Children Without A Court Order

More than 80% of children taken into protective custody in Hawaii are removed from their families without a judge’s approval. That’s not how it works in many other jurisdictions.

Government Workers Wrongly Seize A Child From Parents. Should They Be Made To Pay? Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

Government Workers Wrongly Seize A Child From Parents. Should They Be Made To Pay?

The principle of qualified immunity protects workers in their official actions. But as a recent Hawaii case shows, not always.

She Took Her Fight For Her Grandson Public. A Hawaii Judge Said She Went Too Far Courtesy: Deborah Goodwin

She Took Her Fight For Her Grandson Public. A Hawaii Judge Said She Went Too Far

Big Island resident Deborah Goodwin says she had no choice but to speak to a reporter and file a lawsuit about her case because the confidential system had treated her unfairly. It backfired.

A Judge Took Away These Kids For Good — Until A Higher Court Found A Mistake Courtesy: Shandon Cabinatan and Mahlonna Mawae-Callison

A Judge Took Away These Kids For Good — Until A Higher Court Found A Mistake

An appeals court found that parents in three cases should have had court-appointed lawyers throughout. How many other parents were denied this right?

‘Grab And Go’: How Officials Seized A Fifth Grader To Live With A Father She Barely Knew Courtesy: Hannah David

‘Grab And Go’: How Officials Seized A Fifth Grader To Live With A Father She Barely Knew

The case provides a rare glimpse of Hawaii officials’ immense power to remove children from their households, even without a court order.