Kokua Line

June Watanabe

Wednesday, November 3, 2004

Food handlers do not
have to wear gloves

Question: I recently went to the fish department in a store in Waipahu and saw an employee mixing the fish poke with his bare hand. I was shocked because this is unsanitary. He should have been wearing plastic gloves. I used to be a food handler and was required to use plastic gloves whenever I worked with food. Can you check into this matter?

Answer: You will be even more shocked to learn that gloves are not required in handling food.

"We do not prohibit bare-hand contact," said Brian Choy, chief of the state Department of Health's Sanitation Branch. "There is no absolute banning of bare-hand contact with food."

The Health Department would prefer that food handlers use gloves or utensils and to "minimize bare-hand contact," but, Choy said, "the key is hand-washing, even when they use gloves and utensils."

Based on your complaint, he said he would have an inspector visit the premises to make sure the hand-washing requirement is being followed.

If you have similar complaints, call the Sanitation Branch at 586-8000.

Q: The District Court building at Hotel and Alakea streets has no sign identifying it. For years, I have passed the building on the bus and wondered what that building was. I only recently found out. Does the state plan to put up a sign identifying it?

A: The building is identified: There is a sign saying "District Court of the First Circuit" on the side of the building facing Alakea Street, and one saying "Kauikeaouli Hale" on the side facing Hotel Street, according to state Judiciary officials.

Verizon directories

In the Oct. 28 "Kokua Line," we said customers who had questions or complaints about Verizon's hefty new directory could call 800-222-7398.

A reader said that number was not correct and that she was directed to another number.

Verizon spokeswoman DeAnna Causey said the 800 number, which connects to Verizon Directories, is correct -- calling any other number would not allow Verizon to log comments about the directories.

However, she said there might be some confusion when calling the 800 number. Option 5 should be selected after hearing the first menu of choices, she said.

"If you are a user of the phone book, you miss it because Option 5 is geared toward our customers who advertise with us," Causey said.

But select Option 5, then Option 5 again at the second menu, and you will get a customer service representative for Verizon Directories, she said.


To the jerks who recently dumped trash next to Moanalua Road, town-side of Aiea Shopping Center. The recycling bin and trash cans were just a few feet away.

If you want to be slobs, do it in your own yard. We don't like to see our community trashed. -- No Name


See the Columnists section for some past articles.

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