Sophia Carlisle

Sophia Carlisle

Sophia Carlisle is a writer currently based in the Western United States.

An electric bicycle stands in Alaska eBike in Anchorage. Electric bikes have not been formally regulated in Alaska, despite their increasing popularity. (Photo by Sophia Carlisle/Alaska Beacon)

New legislation could clear up confusion surrounding e-bikes in Alaska 

By: - March 20, 2023

Alaska legislators are considering a bill that would set basic rules for how electric bikes may be used in the state. Despite e-bikes becoming more popular in Alaska, legislators have struggled to define what constitutes an electric bike. House Bill 8 seeks to change that by adding a clear legal definition of what an e-bike […]

Very realistic rendering of a soccer ball with the flag of Alaska in the net.(3D illustration series) (Getty Images)

Alaska state school board supports barring transgender female students from participating in girls’ sports

By: - March 17, 2023

On Thursday, the Alaska State Board of Education approved a resolution that supports barring transgender female students from participating in girls’ sports. The resolution supported regulations that would prohibit students whose sex at birth wasn’t female from participating in girls’ sports. It also stated that regulation should offer a sports division for students who “identify […]

Senate Finance Committee members hear testimony in favor of Senate Bill 58 on Tuesday. The bill would improve access to health care, including mental health care, for new mothers. (Legislature livestream screen capture)

Alaska public health officials, child welfare advocates support bill to extend care for new mothers

By: - March 9, 2023

On Tuesday, the Senate Finance Committee heard testimony from public health officials expressing their support for Senate Bill 58, a bill that would increase postpartum Medicaid coverage for new mothers. SB 58 was introduced by Gov. Mike Dunleavy and comes at a time when maternal death rates are rising across the nation and the state. […]

Anchorage residents gather on Sunday at the University of Alaska Anchorage to address legislators. The speakers overwhelmingly supported increasing education funding per-student. (Screen capture)

Anchorage residents call on legislators to increase funding for schools

By: - March 6, 2023

On Sunday, Anchorage residents called upon legislators to increase the funding for public education. State legislators, parents, educators and students gathered in Rasmuson Hall at the University of Alaska Anchorage for the annual legislative town hall hosted by the Anchorage caucus. While other pressing state issues such as climate change, better benefits for caregivers and […]

An image of posters in an HIV/AIDS support clinic.

Newly diagnosed HIV cases rise in Alaska; health care providers call for precautions, not alarm

By: - March 6, 2023

A recent public health advisory warned of an increase in newly diagnosed HIV cases in Fairbanks and the Interior. The announcement comes at a time when Alaska is experiencing higher rates of sexually transmitted infections. However, health care providers say that the public shouldn’t be too concerned about the increase, but still take necessary precautions […]

Experts want focus to remain on Alaska children after legislator’s controversial comments

By: - February 28, 2023

Protesters gather in front of the Alaska State Capitol on Friday, Feb. 23, 2023, in support of children facing abuse and to demand the removal of Rep. David Eastman, R-Wasilla, from the Legislature. Experts in adverse childhood trauma are encouraging the public to focus on the impacts that adverse childhood trauma has on individuals rather than Eastman's comments. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)

The Food Bank of Alaska sits under a layer of snow in Downtown Anchorage. Staff members from the Food Bank of Alaska spoke to legislators in Juneau on Tuesday about issues they're facing as a result of the SNAP crisis. (Photo by Sophia Carlisle/Alaska Beacon)

Food banks in Alaska are struggling amid nutrition assistance crisis

By: - February 21, 2023

Food banks in Alaska are struggling to provide food to people who aren’t receiving food assistance due to a months-long backlog in applications for food stamps. An anti-hunger coalition asked legislators on Tuesday to take action against the problems they face as a result of the crisis. Speakers from across the state who work together […]

A newborn holds a mother's finger. (Photo by Pramote Polyamate/Getty Images)

New study provides snapshot of increase in maternal deaths in Alaska

By: - February 16, 2023

A new study shows that twice as many pregnant or recently pregnant women died in 2021 as compared to recent years. The new data gives a more detailed view of maternal mortality at a time when Gov. Mike Dunleavy has proposed increasing Medicaid coverage for new mothers. The Alaska Maternal Child Death Review, which produced […]

Local retailers advocate in Capitol for food security in Alaska

By: - February 13, 2023

Local food sellers in Anchorage and Fairbanks encouraged the Legislature on Monday to work toward greater food security in Alaska. This was in an effort to promote more local food production and consumption across the state.  The two advocates for regional food production said that Alaskans can promote greater independence in their food systems by […]

The image shows students working to clean up plastic

School program for ‘Ocean Guardians’ seeks to expand in Alaska

By: - January 30, 2023

Alaska’s coastlines are home to iconic Alaska wildlife, but they’re also besieged by litter and pollution. There’s an effort underway to combat this by teaching students about marine conservation. Scientists and teachers say it’s having success and would like to see it expand.  In the Ocean Guardian School Program, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration partners […]