Internet access a basic human right?

We think fast Internet service should be like water and power — an affordable utility found in every home. Further, we believe it should be viewed as an economic right: In the 21st century, every San Franciscan should have Internet access at home. But many do not.

Here, in the heart of the technology world, more than 100,000 San Francisco residents do not have access to the Internet at home, including 14 percent of our public school students. By not guaranteeing Internet access, we are leaving the next generation of San Franciscans further behind. We need to fix this.

How can we expect our residents — especially the poor, seniors and minority communities who are most affected by this digital divide — to compete in the 21st century if they do not have access to the Internet at home? How do we train them today for the jobs of tomorrow? How do we ensure digital literacy, close the academic divide between students with Internet access at home and those without (called the “homework gap” by the Federal Communications Commission), and ease senior isolation without ensuring Internet access at home?

Read the whole story in the San Francisco Chronicle


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