The N.C. Department of Information Technology (NCDIT) Division of Broadband and Digital Equity yesterday hosted the first of eight regional sessions to collect feedback from residents and businesses to inform state plans to address each community’s needs for affordable high-speed internet access, devices and digital training.
Registration is available for the remaining sessions of the Closing the Digital Divide: From Mountains to Coast listening tour at www.ncbroadband.gov/register:
- April 27: Jacksonville
- May 2: Kernersville
- May 4: Morganton
- May 8: Cherokee
- May 11: Elizabeth City
- May 16: Wingate
“We were thrilled by the participation from residents, community leaders, organizations, and internet service providers in discussions about high-speed internet access and digital equity needs,” said NCDIT Deputy Secretary for Broadband and Digital Equity Nate Denny. “We encourage people across the state to register for the remaining regional sessions to make sure the state’s broadband and digital equity plans reflect their community’s needs.”
As part of Gov. Roy Cooper’s plan to close the digital divide, NCDIT will use information gathered from participants to create comprehensive state plans that are inclusive of all North Carolinians, with focus on the following populations: aging individuals; immigrants; individuals who live in households at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level; individuals with disabilities; individuals with a language barrier, including individuals who are English learners and have low levels of literacy; individuals who are members of a racial or ethnic minority group; individuals who primarily reside in a rural area; incarcerated individuals; LGBTQI+ people; and veterans.
The listening tour follows the planning requirements set by the U.S. Department of Commerce National Telecommunications Information Administration’s Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program and Digital Equity Program. To learn more about the NCDIT Division of Broadband and Digital Equity’s tour and the BEAD and Digital Equity planning process, visit www.ncbroadband.gov/BEAD.