Approximately 19 million Americans still don’t have access to high-speed internet and they are being left behind. 14.5 million of those people live in rural areas, New York State’s North Country Region is one of those affected areas. Internet provides us with the access and tools used in many daily activities. Those who are unable to reach access to the internet are at an unfair advantage. In a time when broadband is essential for communication, research, education and everyday routines, the New York Broadband Program has a goal to ensure that all households in New York have access to high-speed internet. The $500 million dollar program was established in 2015 and is still continuing.
In 2019, internet is being used for a wide variety of activities, many that can better someone’s life. Studies show that 77 percent of Americans use the internet daily, which is up from the 73 percent that did in 2015 when the Broadband Program was established. The majority of adults looking for jobs go online to find leads regarding openings or to even apply to certain positions. Approximately 79 percent of Americans reported using information they found online to search for jobs. If you don’t have access to high speed internet, you are at a disadvantage in the job market. In many schools and educational programs, internet is essential for research and completing assignments. 97 percent of schools now have access to high speed internet, but what if a student goes home and can’t finish an assignment, because they don’t have internet at home. Some programs are even moving to an online-only way of submitting work. The internet makes our lives easier. With online shopping, company websites, social media, and access to almost any piece of information with just a few clicks, high-speed internet is a life changing tool.
“Broadband Program Office.” nysbroadband.ny.gov. 26 Feb. 2019. 27 Feb. 2019 <https://nysbroadband.ny.gov/>.
“Eighth Broadband Progress Report.” Federal Communications Commission.<https://www.fcc.gov/reports-research/reports/broadband-progress-reports/eighth-broadband-progress-reort>.
Maurer, Roy. “Online Job Searching Has Doubled Since 2005.” SHRM. 11 Apr. 2018. SHRM. 27 Feb. 2019 <https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/hr-topics/talent-acquisition/pages/online-job-searching-doubled.aspx>.
Perrin, Andrew, and Jingjing Jiang. “A quarter of Americans are online almost constantly.” Pew Research Center. 14 Mar. 2018. Pew Research Center. 27 Feb. 2019<http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/03/14/about-a-quarter-of-americans-report-going-online-almost-constantly/>.