HONOLULU (KHON2) — The Hawaii State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), as well as Maui County announced Wednesday, Sept. 1, the plans to clean Amala Place in late September.
According to officials, public lands around the Kanaha Pond Wildlife Sanctuary and Wailuku-Kahului Wastewater Treatment Plant will be cleaned due to concerns regarding public health, safety and planned sanctuary improvements.
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“It is totally inappropriate for this special place to be impacted by the dumping of rubbish and human waste. Protective fencing that protects the endangered wildlife has repeatedly been damaged,” said Scott Fretz, Maui branch manager for the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife. “Our staff has been harassed and threatened in the course of doing their jobs and have had to clean up syringes and other hazardous waste in the sanctuary.”
Maui County officials, social workers and service providers are working together to provide shelter resources and services to the 53 individuals living in the area’s homeless encampment, officials reported.
“Caring for people comes first,” said Maui Mayor Michael Victorino. “It’s not compassionate to enable people to continue living without basic sanitation. Mounds of rubbish, human waste and used syringes surround many of the tents and temporary structures in the area.”
Mayor Victorino said once these individuals have been moved into emergency shelters and settled, the Amala Place clean-up will begin and DLNR will start sanctuary improvements.
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According to officials, no trespassing signs will be installed throughout Amala Place to prepare for the clean-up.