Issues of access to technology and digital services became more salient

Concerns with equitable access to digital technology and high-speed internet were prevalent before the pandemic, but kicked into high gear when millions of people were forced to work and study from home, often losing access to resources they relied upon at their schools or jobs. Local governments have reacted by launching Wi-Fi in library parking lots or creating websites that show people where they can locate critical resources, like food assistance. Agencies built new capabilities to allow in-person events, like wedding ceremonies, to be conducted online. But despite the enthusiasm behind these projects, most organizers acknowledge they’re only temporary fixes. Some advocates are pushing the Federal Communications Commission to expand internet access quickly, while others are calling for a more careful evaluation of the digital divide to ensure the most needy areas are accurately prioritized.

Colin Wood

Written by Colin Wood

Colin Wood is the editor in chief of StateScoop and EdScoop. He's reported on government information technology policy for more than a decade, on topics including cybersecurity, IT governance and public safety.

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