The Province of Ontario is investing thousands of dollars to help public libraries grow their access to reliable internet services.
Dependable access will allow libraries to provide residents with resources, such as online tutoring and homework assistance, and in-demand services.
“High-speed internet is critical for public libraries to offer the residents and communities they serve with access to digital resources and learning tools, subscription-based databases, and government services,” Dina Stevens, the executive director of the Federation of Ontario Public Libraries, said in a press release.
“Public libraries also provide reliable internet access to Ontarians of all ages who cannot otherwise access or afford it.”
The $582,000 investment will allow upwards of 155 public libraries serving communities with 20,000 residents or less to provide publicly accessible internet access.
The Ontario government says it will fully reimburse the costs of the services.
Funding comes through the Internet Connectivity Grant program, which has provided libraries more than $3 million since 2018 to ensure communities have internet access.
The announcement adds to other internet investments the government has made. This includes an August 2023 announcement alongside the federal government to bring high-speed internet access to 66,000 homes across 300 communities.
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Source: Government of Ontario