Emily Kamali, Puna District, Hawaii

Interview By Sasha Abramsky | Posted Wednesday March 28, 2012

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Emily Kamali - poverty - Puna District, Hawaii

Sixty-three-year-old Emily Kamali recently paid off her small house located deep into the backroads of the Puna District of Hawaii’s Big Island. The landscape, atop one of the world’s most active volcano’s is lush, the house chaotic. Dogs roam the yard; the small living area is filled with bric-a-brac. Kamali and her husband live on a few hundred dollars a month in social security and a couple hundred dollars worth of food stamps. Routinely, the money runs out before the month; when that happens, the generators go off and they use candles; they eat out of cans, and they rely on friends to make ends meet. Abused as a child, Kamali has had an unremittingly hard life. Recently, when her granddaughter got married, she shaved her head into a mohawk and dyed it purple. It makes her smile, makes her forget some of the accumulated pain.


Tags: criminal justice, hawaii, housing, hunger
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