Every year, the Blandin on Broadband blog does County Broadband Profiles (and will do again when the new maps come out) but given federal opportunities are making it possible to get funding for access and adoption, I thought I’d try to present information for counties to assess their digital equity standing (see table below) and give options for who to contact locally for more information.
Douglas County ranks 15 out of 87 counties for digital equity. That indicates that they are doing well compared to most other counties. The rank well for high school degrees (4); their lowest ranking is percentage of people with disabilities (48). The number of households without a broadband subscription is also lower ranked at 37. (These aren’t low ranking, just comparatively low for Douglas.) They could look into the subset of people with disabilities who don’t have broadband subscriptions to see if that might be an area worth improvement and funding.
Scroll down for details and suggested resources for more information.
Blandin Foundation is using the Microsoft Digital Equity Tool to determine needs by county and make high level recommendations for next steps to consider based on the data. (With special thanks to Carter Grupp, Broadband Coordinator Broadband Coordinator at American Connection Project for Otter Tail County.) Visit the tool if you want to look up more statistics on your community.
Demographic Data and Ranking (out of 87)
|Access to 100/20||21|
|No HS degree||4|
|Below 150% poverty (last 12 months)||15|
|Below poverty (last 12 months)||14|
|No broadband access||16|
The map below shows digital inequity by census tract. The bluer the better; yellow and orange colors indicate more inequity. This map can be helpful in figuring out which parts of your county need the most help.
So where do you go to talk to people in the county about digit equity plans? Good places to start include:
- Alexandria Public School District (ISD #206)
Superintendent Rick Sansted
(320) 762-2141 x4203
- Brandon-Evansville School District (ISD #2908)
Superintendent Louisa Glenetske
- Osakis School District (ISD #213)
Superintendent Randal Bergquist