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Current Digital Inequities

Even though most people in Long Beach have access to computers and Internet subscriptions, some
communities do not have access.

Internet Access (Internet Subcriptions)

Communities without Internet Access by Race

Communities of color lack Internet access at twice the rate of White communities.

Communities without Internet Access by Age

Older adults and youth lack Internet access at higher rates.

Communities without Internet Access by Household Income

Low-income communities lack Internet access at higher rates.

Computer Access

Communities without Computer Access by Race

10.2% of Black/African-American communities lack computer access, nearly three times the rate of White communities at 3.7%.

Communities without Computer Access by Age

Older adults lack computer access at higher rates with 13.8%.

Root Causes

Low-income communities and communities of color have been historically underserved and underresourced because of unjust decisions, policies and practices made by government entities at all levels and private institutions. This includes discriminatory housing (e.g. Redlining) which led to disinvestment and concentrated poverty in neighborhoods of color. Whether the actions were intended or unintended, those actions have an impact on the economic and digital well-being of communities. Below are examples of root causes that contributed to the digital inequities. In addition, due to state and federal regulations, the City has limited authority to regulate the decisions of Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

Lack of Services: Low-income neighborhoods and neighborhoods of color do
not have equal access to Broadband and upgrade services.

Unequal Pay: People of color and women often have much lower wages which
creates barriers for being able to afford technology devices and digital inclusion services.

Language Barriers: Most digital inclusion services and resources are in English which creates barriers for limited and non-English speaking communities.

Lack of Awareness: Most digital inclusion services and resources are communicated through a “top-down approach” which often leaves immigrant communities and
communities of color out of the communication process.

Therefore, it is important to the City of Long Beach to promote and implement an equity lens and inclusion approaches in all decisions, policies and practices. To eliminate the challenges and barriers, the City and local stakeholders will continue to connect low-income communities and communities of color to digital literacy training, the Internet, technology devices and other digital inclusion resources.

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates