Follow up on finding broadband to serve boy with autism in rural MN

In May, I wrote about a boy outside of Biwabik with autism who was missing therapy because his broadband (satellite) was intermittent. In Forum has learned more about the story…

As a youth who suffers from autism, technology is a way that Dalton can connect to the rest of the world.

“He is extremely interested in anything visual,” his mother, Kirsten Klang, said. “That is how he learns.”

However, Dalton usually cannot connect to the internet for videos and other online aids because the family lives in a northern Minnesota area without wired internet service.

“He is so smart,” Klang said. “But I just don’t have the resources to get him as much internet as he could use.”

The satellite internet service Klang uses is spotty, at best, and costly for how little good it provides.

The boy’s story illustrates a push to expand high-speed Internet, known as broadband, in rural Minnesota. Gov. Mark Dayton set a goal of making broadband available to every home and business.

The situation is getting better – but not everywhere…

The government and private investments mean that not everyone’s story is like that experienced by Klang and her son.

“In general, we are seeing the momentum and the interest in the program increase,” Executive Director Danna Mackenzie of the state’s Office of Broadband Development said about state broadband construction grants.

The article goes on to highlights towns with and without access. It’s another example of the growing interest in equitable access for all!

This entry was posted in Digital Divide, Healthcare, MN, Rural by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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