At Mobile Citizen, we believe that making high-quality mobile internet available at an affordable price contributes to an engaged public and ultimately a more equitable democracy. Sadly, despite our best efforts, there is still a massive digital divide in this country when it comes to access to high-speed, broadband internet. If you’re reading this, we’re guessing you probably understand the problem this causes. Unfortunately, recognizing the problem is the only the first part of the solution. While Mobile Citizen does great work in this area, it can’t do it alone. Fortunately, organizations like the National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA) and the Schools, Health and Libraries Broadband Coalition (SHLB) are here to help!
National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA)
A good first stop on your journey to combatting the digital divide, NDIA is a unified voice for home broadband access, public broadband access, personal devices and local technology training and support programs. It works collaboratively to craft, identify and disseminate financial and operational resources for digital inclusion programs while serving as a bridge to policymakers and the general public. It hosts an annual conference and partners with other like-minded organizations on several excellent digital inclusion initiatives. You can learn more about NDIA on its website at digitalinclusion.org.
Schools, Health and Libraries Broadband Coalition (SHLB)
The SHLB Coalition is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) advocacy organization that supports open, affordable, high-capacity broadband connections for anchor institutions (e.g. schools, hospitals and libraries) and their surrounding communities. The SHLB Coalition is based in Washington, DC and has a diverse membership of commercial and non-commercial organizations that support its mission from across the United States. Working heavily to support policies that help anchor institutions expand access to the internet, SHLB holds a yearly conference bringing together many of its members to discuss the broadband policy environment for anchor institutions. You can learn more about SHLB on its website at shlb.org.
These are just some of the great organizations working to create a more digitally equitable world. We encourage you to check out each organization and explore the other organizations that are working together to address the digital divide and make information more accessible for all.