During the COVID-19 pandemic, having reliable, high-speed internet has become more crucial than ever. The world has moved even more online, yet many Mainers are being left behind due to lack of infrastructure and walled out because of unaffordable rates.

BroadbandNow, an independent group that researches high-speed internet coverage in states around the country, found that 35,000 Mainers have an insufficient broadband connection and 12,000 Mainers have no connection at all in their homes. Talk about a “digital divide”! We can and must do better when it comes to bringing reliable, high-speed internet to all Mainers, no matter their location. There is lots of chatter about expanding high-speed internet access right now, but I hope we’ll see the needed action to back it up and get Maine connected to the world’s largest communities, markets and classrooms we’ve ever had.

The Maine Broadband Coalition, in partnership with the ConnectME Authority, launched the Get Up To Speed test to help do just that. By taking this simple, 30-second test, you help map the broadband connection speeds in Maine and show local leaders where we need access the most across the state.

The test is quick and easy. All you have to do is visit mainebroadbandcoalition.org to get started. I urge everyone to take a few minutes out of their day and help bring better broadband to Maine by completing the speed test and letting others in your community know, too.

Erica Magnus
AARP Maine Communications volunteer
Windham