Amanda Peacher

Amanda Peacher is an Arthur F. Burns fellow reporting and producing in Berlin in 2013. Amanda is from Portland, Oregon, where she works as the public insight journalist for Oregon Public Broadcasting. She produces radio and online stories, data visualizations, multimedia projects, and facilitates community engagement opportunities for OPB's newsroom.

You can follow Amanda on twitter or on facebook.

A little boy in an orange shirt walks up to a grab-and-go meal site at an elementary school in Salt Lake City, Utah. A school worker wearing a mask uses a bullhorn to let kitchen staff know the boy's there. Then a staffer sets a bag lunch and some extra strawberries on a table and backs away.

 


In July, a transgender woman in Idaho will make history. 

Adree Edmo will become the first trans inmate in the nation to receive gender confirmation surgery through a court order. Edmo's legal case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, and now, a ruling in her favor stands as precedent in the 9th Circuit. 

In a 7-2 ruling, the United States Supreme Court has denied Idaho’s appeal to halt the sex reassignment surgery of a transgender inmate.

A few weeks ago, Lesley Dickson, a psychiatrist in Las Vegas, says she started feeling concerned for the hospital workers treating COVID-19 patients. 

When you think about Doctors Without Borders you may picture the medical humanitarian NGO working in war-torn countries like Syria or Yemen. But as the COVID-19 crisis lays bare inequalities and vulnerabilities in the U.S., the organization's working here, too, assisting the Navajo Nation in fighting the disease.

Most of us have never experienced anything like the coronavirus pandemic in our lifetime, and that's especially true for children. The Mountain West News Bureau spoke with five kids about what's on their minds: 6-year-old Emerson, 10-year-old Eleanor, 11-year-old Wren, 11-year-old Brennan, and 10-year-old Olivia. Amanda Peacher shares their voices in this audio postcard.


Sound Wave Events in Boise, Idaho, is usually busy with weddings and graduation parties this time of year. But with most gatherings now canceled, the business has pivoted to block parties.

"If you told me a month ago that we would be DJing out of the back of a truck I would not have believed you," said Sound Wave owner Kristin Cole.

Libraries across the Mountain West may be closed, but that doesn't mean librarians are idle. 

Many libraries these days have 3D printers. And that means anyone with a blueprint and the right ingredients can become mini manufacturers of, say, plastic face shields. 

Your Questions About COVID-19, Answered 

Our reporters are working hard to answer your questions about COVID-19. These responses are curated by the Mountain West News Bureau and our public media partners at America Amplified. (Updated 4/23/20)

The Mountain West News Bureau is taking questions from listeners across the region about the COVID-19 pandemic. If you have a question, email us at mountainwestnewsbureau@gmail.com or give us a call at 208-352-2079 and leave us a message. This service is powered by America Amplified, a public radio initiative.

Over the next few weeks, the Mountain West News Bureau is taking questions from listeners across the region about the COVID-19 pandemic. If you have a question, email us at mountainwestnewsbureau@gmail.com or give us a call at 208-352-2079 and leave us a message. This service is powered by America Amplified, a public radio initiative.

As the U.S. Forest Service prepares for the wildfire season, it must also confront COVID-19.

Already the agency's put a stop to prescribed burning. And it says it will continue fire suppression and other activities with guidance from the CDC.

Colorado became the 22nd state in the nation to abolish the death penalty when Gov. Jared Polis signed the legislature's repeal into law on Monday.

The death penalty is still on the books in every other state in the Mountain West except New Mexico. But University of Colorado-Boulder sociology professor Mike Radelet thinks that could change. 

Amid the COVID-19 epidemic, blood drives on campuses and corporate offices across the Mountain West have been cancelled. That's led to a "severe blood shortage."

As the Mountain West braces for more coronavirus cases, one community service has become even more vital: Meals on Wheels.

A new report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition spotlights the severe lack of affordable housing in parts of the Mountain West.

This week the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed its decision in the case of Idaho inmate Adree Edmo, the transgender woman who sued the state to be provided sex reassignment surgery.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the state of Idaho must provide sex reassignment surgery to inmate Adree Edmo.


Updated at 4:34 p.m. ET

Editor's note: This story includes accounts of self-harm.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the state of Idaho must provide gender confirmation surgery to inmate Adree Edmo.

The panel of judges agreed with U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill's ruling in Edmo's favor last December, writing that his findings were "logical and well-supported" and that "responsible prison officials were deliberately indifferent to Edmo's gender dysphoria, in violation of the Eighth Amendment."

The Trump Administration has selected a champion of private property rights and oil, gas and coal energy development to fill a top position at the Bureau of Land Management.

Across the Mountain West, the majority of our land mass is publicly owned. A new mapping project by Headwaters Economics provides county-level data that can help you understand what that means.

 


The Environmental Protection Agency is expanding the use of an insecticide that is toxic to bees. The move affects more than 17 million acres of farmland in our region.

 


More and more people are becoming rock climbers, and the economic effects are big in our region. That’s according to a new report from the American Alpine Club.

 


A gray wolf was spotted in Northern Colorado this week and Wyoming Game and Fish just confirmed it's a member of a Wyoming pack.

 


A new analysis shows that despite record visitation, the National Park Service is hiring fewer rangers and other staff.

 


Housing prices are still on the rise in the Mountain West, and so is the cost renting. That's according to the latest housing report from Zillow.


According to a new analysis, proposed changes to the federal poverty line could mean big changes for low income people in the Mountain West.


If you’re in the market for a new tent or fleece jacket, you could see prices for those products go up. The Trump Administration is proposing new tariffs on items like these that are produced in China.

 


A coalition of conservationists is petitioning Idaho and Wyoming to make hunters carry bear spray when they’re within the Yellowstone ecosystem.

 


House Democrats railed against the Trump Administration’s proposed National Parks budget in a committee hearing this week.

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