State or National:
Position in Brief:
High-speed affordable internet access is an essential service that should be readily available to all US residents and businesses.
Statement of Position on Digital Equity as adopted by concurrence by delegates to Convention in June 2022: The League of Women Voters believes that high-speed affordable internet access is an essential service that should be readily available to all US residents and businesses. National, state, and local government policies should support broadband, wireless, and other means of high-speed internet deployment throughout the nation. Efficient, high-speed, affordable access to the internet for all US residents in their homes, schools, and workplaces — regardless of geographic location or neighborhood demographics — is a necessity for assuring equal access to local and state government, maintaining openness and transparency in government activities, communicating with legislative leaders, engaging in political discourse, competing in the global marketplace, and assuring that voters receive the information they need to participate in our democracy.
The League of Women Voters supports making high-speed internet access available to all residents of the United States, without charge, through schools, libraries, and other secure public buildings.
Community Access and Public Affairs Media
The League of Women Voters believes that community access media – for public, educational, and governmental programming (PEG) – must be adequately protected, promoted, and funded, regardless of the provider of media services. Statewide public affairs programming must be adequately protected, promoted, and funded by state legislatures and available to all residents, regardless of the provider of media services. Government should provide opportunities for citizen participation in decisions regarding community access, or PEG media.
Access to public affairs programming through modern media communication is essential to the public interest and to the League of Women Voters’ mission and purpose — to protect civil liberties, ensure open, transparent government, and promote the public’s right to know. To protect the public interest, high-quality PEG transmission and PEG availability on basic service tiers and on the internet are essential.
The 2022 convention voted to include this position in Impact on Issues and the national office will track the League’s engagement and work around this issue for the next biennium. Convention 2022 adopted the LWV Connecticut position by concurrence.