Schools Health and Libraries Broadband Coalition
Libraries may be on the brink of a great mobilization to narrow the digital divide. The needs are there, and money is certainly available. If given creative reign with telehealth, great things can come from even the smallest of libraries in these areas:
The Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition asked the Federal Communications Commission to expedite affordable broadband solutions for unconnected Americans. The novel coronavirus is driving schools to online learning and increasing healthcare providers’ reliance on telehealth solutions.
Congress is on the verge of passing legislation to improve broadband maps. Unfortunately, tucked inside the “Broadband DATA Act” is a provision that could unintentionally jeopardize broadband funding for schools, libraries, and healthcare providers.
In a letter, the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition applauded Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai for promoting fiber broadband deployment to schools and libraries through the E-rate program. “Competitive bidding has been a fundamental principle of the E-rate program since its inception,” said John Windhausen, executive director of the SHLB Coalition.
Kansas City prides itself on being a national leader for digital equity. Becoming the first Google Fiber city in 2011 launched KC into the spotlight as it became America’s first gigabit metropolis.