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Bridging Baltimore's Digital Divide: Three Advocates' Perspectives

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Forty percent of Baltimore’s 243 thousand households lack wired internet service. The city and non-profit groups are working to bring more underserved neighborhoods online. (Map credit: Baltimore City)

We begin today with the challenge of digital equity in Baltimore City. Forty percent of Baltimore’s 243 thousand households lack wired internet service. What would it take to get those homes connected, and to connect all of the city’s public institutions, our public housing units, our recreation centers, and our small businesses?

What other cities can serve as paradigms? What would it cost to create and maintain a high-speed network? What are the costs of not acting and keeping so many of our neighbors on the outside looking in when it comes to the digital economy?

Tom's guests are three leading advocates for broadening and improving Baltimore's broadband service:

Jason Hardebeck is the director of Broadband and Digital Equity for Baltimore, a new office created a few months ago by Mayor Brandon Scott. Jason joins us on Zoom.

Adam Echelman is the executive director of Libraries without Borders and co-leader of The Baltimore Digital Equity Coalition, a coalition of more than 60 members. Adam joins joins us on our digital line.

Mary Miller is a Senior Fellow at The Johns Hopkins 21st Century Cities Initiative, and the co-author, along with Mac McComas, of a report titled Achieving Digital Equity in Baltimore.  She was a candidate in the 2020 Democratic primary for Mayor.  She joins us on Zoom.

Jason Hardebeck (left), Baltimore City's Director for Broadband and Digital Equity; Adam Echelman, Baltimore Digital Equity Coalition; Mary Miller, senior fellow, Hopkins' 21st century Cities Initiative (credits: Mayor's Office/Echelman/Miller)

Host, Midday (M-F 12:00-1:00)
Malarie is Midday's Supervisory Producer.
Rob is Midday's senior producer.