A year ago, Canada’s digital divide lingered well below the radar of many charitable organizations and funders. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought it into sharp relief. Communities with little to no reliable internet or broadband access are effectively cut off from many of Canada’s workarounds to physical gatherings: essential services, online learning, and telehealth systems.
Much of this digital divide is between rural and remote communities and affluent urban neighbourhoods. Sometimes, conventional internet services are unaffordable for low-income residents. And in other cases, especially with Indigenous communities, there simply is no internet access to be had at any price. The effects of disconnection cascade. A lack of internet or high-speed access can cut off job applicants from searching for opportunities. It can make keeping in touch with distant friends or family
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