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Woman with long name gets ID

December 31, 2013
By AUDREY McAVOY , The Associated Press

HONOLULU - A Hawaii woman whose last name is 36 characters long has finally gotten the whole thing to fit on her driver's license and state identification card.

Janice "Lokelani" Keihanaikukauakahihulihe'ekahaunaele has a surname that consists of 35 letters plus an okina, a mark used in the Hawaiian alphabet. She received her new license and ID after her campaign to get her full name on the cards prompted the state Department of Transportation to change its policy to expand the number of characters that can appear.

Keihanaikukauakahihulihe'ekahaunaele, 54, said Monday that she's happy she was able to help fix the problem of identification cards lacking sufficient space for long names.

"Now, in the state of Hawaii, we are no longer second-class citizens because of the length of our name," she said.

Hawaii driver's licenses and ID cards previously had room for names totaling as many as 35 characters. The new policy allows 40 characters for last names, 40 for first names and 35 for middle names.

Keihanaikukauakahihulihe'ekahaunaele got the name when she married her Hawaiian husband in 1992.

He used only the one name, which his grandfather gave him after it came to him in a dream.

Under the old policy, Hawaii County issued Keihanaikukauakahihulihe'ekahaunaele her driver's license and state ID with the last letter of her name chopped off. And it omitted her first name.

She told news media about the issue this year after a policeman gave her a hard time about her driver's license during a traffic stop.

Last month, the state Department of Transportation announced that it had expanded the character limits.

Keihanaikukauakahihulihe'ekahaunaele is now hoping to get the Social Security Administration to allow more characters on its identification cards.

The agency's cards have two lines for names. The first line has 26 spaces for first and middle names, while the second line has 26 spaces for a last name and suffix.

 
 

 

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