Ensuring Digital Access And Inclusion For All Communities
Although San Jose currently has a 90 percent connectivity rate among all residents, that number drops to just 70 percent among low-income residents. In an effort to identify digital needs and ensure that all residents have access to affordable online services, the city partnered with FUSE Fellow Dolan Beckel to develop a strategic plan to achieve broad digital inclusion that contributes to the city’s larger economic, social equity and civic engagement goals.
Dolan helped develop a broadband and digital equity strategy, and a strategy to distribute 10,000 devices and four years of free internet for 10,000 San Jose high school students with a Sprint 1 Million Project Grant. Dolan’s work has helped close the digital divide in the city and pushed San Jose officials to engage more proactively with telecom providers as it invests in staffing, policy changes, and infrastructure investment to influence telecom providers to spend up to $2 billion in San Jose’s broadband digital infrastructure.