72-year-old receives
eviction reprieve

Jane Kamanu has an 11-year-old
girl in her care


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

» The last name of Dan Tabori, Prudential Locations' executive vice president for business operations, was misspelled as Tobori in a Page A5 article Monday.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at corrections@starbulletin.com.

A 72-year-old woman who was told to clear out from a low-income senior living complex in Waimanalo by last Friday because she took in her 11-year-old great-grandchild has gotten more time to find a new place.

Officials agreed to give Jane Kamanu an unspecified amount of leeway time as long as she checks in with the property's management company, Prudential Locations, weekly on her progress toward finding a new home.

So far, she has had no luck in finding an apartment whose rent is comparable to the $299 she is now paying. Several organizations, including the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and Alu Like Inc., have offered their support but also have not found a place Kamanu can afford on her only income: a $682 monthly Social Security check.

"All they can do is say they've tried, and there's not too much more they can do," Kamanu said yesterday after scouring newspaper classifieds for rentals.

Kamanu moved into Kulanakauhale Maluhia o Na Kupuna, which sits on state Hawaiian Home Lands Department property, in 2002.

The senior housing complex does not allow children.

But at the time Kamanu did not have her great-grandchild, Kehealani, with her because the girl had recently gone to live with her mother. Months after moving into the complex, though, Kehealani pleaded with Kamanu to take her back.

Kamanu has raised Kehealani since she was an infant and has guardianship of her.

About six months ago, nearly two years after Kehealani moved in, Kamanu got her first citation for taking in her great-grandchild. Her second citation came on May 25, and she received her eviction notice on June 2.

Dan Tobori, Prudential's executive vice president for business operations, said the length of time Kamanu will be allowed to stay is up to the complex's landlord.

A representative for the landlord declined comment through Prudential last week.

"We're enforcing the rules. We hope that she finds something, and we're also being sympathetic," Tobori said, adding that the market is tough and the rent range Kamanu is asking for is "impossible to get in family housing."

"We don't just kick the elderly out, because we know it's a difficult situation."

The issue has ignited debate among members of Na Tutu, an advocacy group for grandparents raising grandchildren. Leaders say Kamanu's situation highlights the critical need for low- to moderate-income senior-living homes in the islands that allow children. Currently, there are none.

| | |
E-mail to City Desk


© Honolulu Star-Bulletin -- https://archives.starbulletin.com