By Rebecca Kauma, Director of Digital Equity, County of Los Angeles, Internal Services Department

Like many other regions across the country, Los Angeles County is being impacted by the digital divide—meaning some communities do not have equitable access, skills and support to effectively engage online. More than 325,000 (9.7%) of households in LA County do not have an internet subscription, and more than 156,000 (4.6%) of households do not have a computer.* This nationwide issue was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, with various communities throughout the county disproportionately impacted by these digital inequities. This includes lower-income households and communities that are predominantly Black, Latino, indigenous, all people of color, communities with lower educational attainment and older adults (ages 65 and up).

LA County is leading regional efforts to ensure that all communities and individuals in the region have the technology access,
capacity, skills and support to fully participate in society, democracy and the 21st-century economy.


  • Affordable, reliable broadband internet infrastructure deployment and services adoption
  • Internet-enabled devices that meet the needs of community members
  • Multilingual and culturally relevant digital literacy and skills training
  • Quality hardware and software technical support
  • Applications and online content designed to enable self-sufficiency, participation and collaboration
  • Digital navigation support to guide community members to digital inclusion services
  • Accurate, reliable and transparent broadband internet and digital equity data and maps

The Community Broadband Networks Initiative, launched in fall 2021, is a public-private partnership with the county and
WeLink that brings affordable and reliable broadband internet to underserved areas in East Los Angeles/Boyle Heights and South
Los Angeles. WeLink offers a groundbreaking, low-cost internet plan starting at $25 per month to 50,000 qualified households in
those communities. Another county initiative, Delete the Divide, implements digital equity in underserved communities through partnerships and technology resources that empower residents and small businesses. More than 200 interns are serving as digital navigators and connecting county residents to digital inclusion resources and services.

The county Intergovernmental Broadband Coordinating Committee is a regional collective body and standing committee of more than 60 multidisciplinary stakeholder organizations and community members. The committee collaborates to pursue, secure and implement federal and state grant program funding to address the digital divide across LA County through county-led intergovernmental and cross-sector regional coordination. This includes pursuing, securing and implementing Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment and Digital Equity Act program funding opportunities that are expected to be available in 2024.

With uplifting collective impact, a racial equity lens, and a shared responsibility for action in collaboration and partnership with
the communities most in need, the public, private and nonprofit sectors are key to advancing digital equity in LA County. This
includes co-creating, co-implementing and co-supporting inclusive digital equity practices, policies, programs and systems change efforts.

By providing equitable access to reliable, high-speed broadband internet infrastructure and services, digital skills training, technical support and digital navigation support for every individual and household, underserved communities will thrive in day-to-day activities. •

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