Stebbins is having one of the Norton Sound region’s worst outbreaks of COVID-19 with at least 24 cases being reported since the outbreak started on October 6th. Community leaders and health experts say the outbreak is highlighting the need for running water. While running water would be ideal, KNOM reports on some temporary solutions the community of over 700 is using in the meantime.

Community discussion surrounding a study of generational trauma has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Sealaska Heritage Institute and the Hoonah Indian Association are collaborating on a study that looks at the potential impact of historical trauma on Alaska Native people.

Participants were recruited beginning in 2019.

Researchers from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana were scheduled to visit Hoonah and Juneau to discuss the preliminary results and next steps.

Alaska Federation of Natives stays mum on climate change task force progress

Oct 26, 2020

The Alaska Federation of Natives Convention came to a close with little discussion about how to respond to climate change. This year, the convention’s third day, when resolutions are openly debated, was eliminated.

Various Native organizations submitted 30 resolutions for consideration. There is no open resolution debate this year. Only one resolution briefly mentions climate change.

Changing a federal rule isn’t simple, but the Trump administration is on the verge of doing it. Last month it started a 30-day clock to completely exempt Tongass National Forest from the 2001 Roadless Rule.

Pebble is now less than a month away from its deadline to submit a new mitigation plan to show how it's going to make up for the wetlands damage expected from construction of the mine. The plan is key to obtaining a federal permit, and Pebble says it will meet that deadline, but the secretly recorded "Pebble Tapes" have triggered additional scrutiny about the state’s apparent assistance with the plan.

The group tasked with reshaping the future of the state-run ferry system is recommending the creation of an executive board, fewer vessels, and at least two years of forward funding for the cash-strapped ferries. The Alaska Marine Highway Reshaping Work Group wrapped up eight months of work this month and has forwarded its ideas to the governor’s office. 

Gambell is having the region’s largest outbreak of Covid-19. On October 4, the community had 29 cases being reported. Residents in Gambell are living in lockdown with limited resources.

(Editor’s note: This story was originally published by KNOM in Nome on October 4. Some data may be out out of date as of this re-publishing)

When the power went out in Newtok for a month, some families lost all of the subsistence harvest that they had stored in their freezers. Now, the village is banding together to help those families stock up again for the winter. Plus, donations are arriving from outside the community.

After power was restored in Newtok, Tribal Administrator Andrew John went door to door to assess how much food had been lost.

This year, the Elders and Youth Conference went virtual for the first time in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This year’s meeting was a little different, conducted mostly through pre-recorded messages and live Zoom calls. However, both keynote addresses highlighted the desire to keep thousands of years of Native culture moving forward, pandemic or not.