Eighty-five thousand Mainers lack access to high-speed internet.

It was nearly impossible, even pre-COVID-19, to do business, stay in touch with family and friends and access digital materials without reliable high-speed internet access. Now, with physical access limited, the ability to utilize online resources is even more critical. Many doctors’ visits are primarily or only telehealth for the foreseeable future. Students, too, have become suddenly dependent on the internet. Many workers have been asked to work remotely, and access to internet allows them to do their jobs.

For all these reasons and more, investing in better high-speed internet infrastructure makes sense.

Moreover, many people need internet access to apply for jobs or file for unemployment. A few years ago, I helped a man apply for a dishwashing position online. The application was solely available online. This man came to the library because he didn’t have access at home.

I urge voters to vote “yes” on Question 1 on July 14.

Jennifer Dupree


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