Martha Lane Fox Plans Broadband For Poorest
The Government’s new “Digital Inclusion Champion”, Martha Lane Fox, has outlined her plans to get broadband to the UK’s poorest homes as part of her universal broadband access remit.
There are around 6 million people currently without broadband access who rely heavily upon government aid.
In a statement to the Financial Times Lane Fox said, “The people left behind in technology are being left behind in many spheres of their lives. That is not right and it is not good enough”.
It is thought that if broadband can be set up in the UK’s poorest homes, it will also help to cut government public spending.
Around 80% of interaction that the government has with the public is with the poorer community while it is estimated that 70% of people living in social housing have no internet access.
This, according to Lane Fox, is what is damaging government public spending. She said, “By keeping them offline you are inherently keeping the cost of government high”.
However, there is concern among MPs that forcing people online will create isolation and increase social exclusion. It is one thing being encouraged to get online, but some feel that the government are actually trying to force people online instead of just encouraging it.
Lane Fox’s Digital Inclusion Initiative aims to educate those in the poorer sector who have no prior knowledge of the benefits of the internet. Whether the scheme will work is yet to be seen but Lane Fox is adamant that these outline plans will help in the long run.