Medianewspaths to recovery

The key to solving Alaska’s alcohol problem lies with how it’s viewed

May 14th, 2016

FAIRBANKS — Alaska has a problem with alcohol abuse, and residents are increasingly aware of it — a crucial step in addressing the related health, social and economic impacts. While vastly complex, subjective and little studied, public perceptions of alcohol consumption are key to finding a solution to Alaska’s rate of alcohol abuse, which is […]

Fairbanks sobering center takes first step

April 16th, 2016

A small first step has been taken toward opening a sobering center for incapacitated inebriates in Fairbanks. An informal coalition of four entities — the city of Fairbanks, Fairbanks Native Association, Fairbanks Memorial Hospital and Tanana Chiefs Conference — submitted a joint letter of interest to the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority requesting a grant […]

Underage drinking treatment evolves with better understanding

March 30th, 2016

Barack Obama stood inside a 9-by-10-foot prison cell meant to hold three men. It was July 2015, and he had just become the first United States president to visit a federal prison. As he stood in the small cell, he reflected that it was only “by the grace of God” he was standing there as […]

Army combats alcohol abuse with aggressive testing, education

March 30th, 2016

John Timmins, the Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator, explains a white board showing all the drug and alcohol trainings held on Fort Wainwright over the past few months in the Army Substance Abuse Program building on Fort Wainwright on Wednesday, January 27, 2016.   Between the trauma of war and the cold and darkness associated with […]

Finding a safe place: Searching for a solution to handling public inebriates in protective custody

January 30th, 2016

Taking incapacitated inebriates off the streets and putting them into protective custody might seem like a simple act of compassion, a lifesaver in Alaska’s cold climate enshrined in state law, but it comes with some problems.   Among the issues that the state’s behavioral health advocates and public officials are wrestling with in 2016: How […]

Alaska law on underage drinking could see major change

November 6th, 2015

On a cold Friday night earlier this month, Fairbanks Police Department officers pulled up to a South Fairbanks home in response to a report of an assault.   A 19-year-old had been heavily drinking and had allegedly attacked a family member. The teen would later record a preliminary breath-alcohol content of .260, which is more […]

Alaska law makes it harder to obtain student behavior data

November 6th, 2015

The Alaska Legislature in 2012 passed a bill to measure the performance data of every school in the state, allowing administrators and legislators to track the success of programs and interventions at the school level.   But at the same time the state is making it easier to track school performance, it also is making […]

At a glance: Proposed changes in state law regarding underage drinking

November 6th, 2015

Here are the proposed changes, crafted by the state Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, in state law related to minors consuming alcohol: Restore minor consuming alcohol to a true violation Impose additional fines and license suspensions on business caught selling alcohol to minors Require all beer kegs to be registered Revise required signs that are required to […]

Intervention with a purpose combats underage drinking

November 6th, 2015

Jaalen Phillips, left, and Ransom DuBois, have trouble keeping their balance while walking a line wearing Fatal Vision Simulation Goggles, goggles used to demonstrate alcohol impairment as a prevention technique, during lunch at Lathrop High School on Wednesday, October 28, 2015. Kevin Illingworth was first brought home by police officers when he was 7 years […]

Preventing underage drinking takes more than scare tactics

November 4th, 2015

In 2008, the Australian government aired a television public service announcement in which a teenager who drank too much kills his own friend with a punch to the head. Another of the ads showed a teenage girl who got drunk at a party having sex on the lawn while dozens of her peers look on […]