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Statement of Chief Justice Mark E. Recktenwald Regarding COVID-19 Vaccinations

Posted on Aug 5, 2021 in News & Reports, Press Releases

HONOLULU — Chief Justice Mark E. Recktenwald issued the following message to all Hawaii State Judiciary employees, encouraging them to get vaccinated against COVID-19:

The Judiciary firmly supports COVID-19 vaccinations and believes strongly that a fully vaccinated workforce is necessary for the health and safety of one another, those with whom we interact, and the entire community, which continues to suffer greatly from this devastating virus. Therefore, we are planning a vaccination and testing program to require that all employees be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or undergo testing on a regular basis.

This is consistent with the approach of other public employers. Governor David Ige, all four Hawaii Mayors, the Department of Education, and the University of Hawaii, will be requiring that all their employees be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or undergo testing on a regular basis.

Details and an implementation date for the Judiciary’s program will be determined in discussion with stakeholders. We intend the interim period to serve as a reasonable timeframe for employees to assess their personal situations and decide whether to be vaccinated or undergo regular testing. We urge employees who are able to be vaccinated to do so. Should you have questions about vaccinations, please consult public health authorities, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( and the Hawai‘i State Department of Health (

As previously advised, employees may take up to two hours of paid time off for each vaccination dose, as operations permit. Employees must coordinate with and receive authorization from their supervisor prior to leaving the worksite and may be required to provide proof of registration.

We must work together during these challenging times to do all that we can to protect each other, our families, and the communities we serve.

Mark Recktenwald

For more information, contact the Communications and Community Relations Office at 808-539-4909 or via email at

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