Martin County Digital Equity Profile – ranked 60

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.

Summary

Martin County ranks 60 out of 87 counties for digital equity. They are in a position where they need to work on the three pillars of digital equity: affordable access to broadband, device ownership and the skills to use them. Their standing with poverty ranking, school attainment and disability will help build a case with potential funders. The good news is that they have been working on digital equity in the past and will have local experts and some community engagement.

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)

Martin County Ranking
Access to 100/20 38
No bachelors 60
No HS degree 33
Below 150% poverty (last 12 months) 54
Below poverty (last 12 months) 69
Disability 64
No computer 72
No broadband access 26
No subscription 49
Overall average 60

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:

Libraries

Schools

Regional Development Commission

There’s a lot to take in but sometimes it’s also helpful to see what a community has done in the past, so we’ve gathered specific projects funded through the Blandin Foundation:

Project Owner Project Name Description
ISD 2752 Fairmont Area Schools Digital Responsibility Project support for the Digital Responsibility project to encourage responsible use of electronic media and inform students, parents, teachers, adults with disabilities, business people and community members about consequences and best practices
ISD 2752 Fairmont Community Ed and Recreation Fairmont Area Community Calendar Project support to develop and market a shared community calendar and facilities scheduler
Martin County App Camp Project support for a technology learning workshop on mobile app creation for students
Martin County Wi-Fi Hotspots Throughout Martin County Project support to create a network of Wi-Fi hotspots throughout Martin County
Martin County Robust Network Feasibility Fund Grant Project support for a feasibility study to choose and prioritize programs and initiatives to stimulate development of state-of-the-art broadband networks throughout Martin County
Martin County Social Media and Online Presence Skill Training for Business Project support to provide businesses in the Martin County area relevant training in social media and online presence
Martin County Technology Education and Training Project support to provide broadband technology training opportunities for Martin County residents
Martin County EDA Devices for Martin County Schools Capital support to provide a variety of devices for local school districts allowing them to upgrade their use of technology

 

This entry was posted in MN Broadband Equity Profiles 2022 by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (blandinonbroadband.org), hosts a radio show on MN music (mostlyminnesota.com), supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota (elimstrongtowershelters.org) and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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