More than half the households in five neighborhoods in south St. Petersburg lacked connections to high-speed broadband internet as recently as 2019. That puts them at a disadvantage when it comes to education, employment and healthcare, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a new report from the City Health Dashboard.
“One of my dreams, and COVID proved it, is that internet is a utility like water, that everybody should have,” said Alison Barlow, executive director of the St. Petersburg Innovation District and co-lead of the Digital Inclusion Working Group. “How we get to that point and make it affordable is a challenge.”
There is not a one-size-fits-all solution, but the Digital Inclusion Working Group, co-led by Barlow and Veatrice Farrell, executive director of Deuces Live, have several ideas. One of them is a center to assist people in signing up for a new federal program that provides financial help to households struggling to afford internet service during the pandemic.
To learn more about this collaboration read the recent St. Pete Catalyst Article.
A city-owned building at 450 8th Avenue Southeast in St. Pete will soon become a hub for marine science, defense, and technology companies (From the July 2021 SPID newsletter).
Local youth recently conducted a series of interviews with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) professionals in our community about their careers (From the July 2021 SPID newsletter).
The Sunshine City and its sparkling waterfront parks recently became the center of Tampa Bay's red tide crisis. Rafts of dead fish were washing ashore quickly, and workers picked up tons of dead marine life from the coastline in recent weeks (From the July 2021 SPID newsletter).