How Alaska courts wrestle with COVID-19 constraints

Every American institution and most aspects of everyday life are impacted by efforts to quell the spread of the coronavirus. Public schools are closed. Working parents share the kitchen table and the family WiFi with students studying at home. Telemedicine gets a huge boost as medical facilities try to keep caregivers and patients at arms length. Churches hold virtual services.

The Alaska Court System is no exception. While charged with delivering due process and fairness, courts have to adapt to the constraints of pandemic suppression just like the rest of us.

What if you can’t pay your rent and fear eviction? What if you share custody of your children, but one of you is quarantined? What if you need to pay bail?

All these questions and more are the subject of today’s discussion. News accounts suggest that for children and domestic partners, the homes they are confined to are not always the safest places to be. How do the courts keep themselves accessible to victims?

We’ll learn more as this edition of Hometown Alaska invites the Alaska Court System administrator and a judge serving the Kenai Peninsula to describe how the judicial system is abiding by pandemic constraints while fulfilling its mission of justice.

Join us with your questions or comments throughout the program.

HOST: Kathleen McCoy

GUESTS:

  • Stacey Marz, Alaska Court System Administrator
  • Jennifer Wells, Superior Court Judge, Kenai

LINKS:

PARTICIPATE:

  • Call 550-8433 (Anchorage) or 1-888-353-5752 (statewide) during the live broadcast (2:00 – 3:00pm)
  • Send e-mail to hometown@alaskapublic.org before, during or after the live broadcast (e-mails may be read on air)
  • Post your comment or question below (comments may be read on air
  • LIVE: Monday, April 20, 2020 at 2:00 p.m
  • RE-AIR: Monday, April 20, 2020 at 8:00 p.m.