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City of Phoenix Housing Department Joins the ConnectHome Nation Initiative City of Phoenix Housing Department Joins the ConnectHome Nation Initiative <div class="ExternalClass831004FAD6D84873BF6BF29484AE6EE3"><p>The city of Phoenix Housing Department has been selected among 30 communities throughout the United States to be part of the inaugural cohort of ConnectHome Nation, an innovative program to end the digital divide in public housing across the nation.</p><p>"We are working to build a globally competitive, innovation-driven economy in Phoenix that works for everyone.  Internet access has become critical to education at any level and job hunting at any field in that 21<sup>st</sup> century economy," said Mayor Greg Stanton. "When we take steps like this to bridge the digital divide, we keep families from becoming marginalized and from having their future success and quality of life dramatically foreclosed."   </p><p>ConnectHome Nation creates a platform for community leaders, local governments, nonprofit organizations and private industry representatives to work together to provide free or low-cost internet access, media devices and digital-literacy training to families who live in public housing.  </p><p>"The Internet has become a necessity to achieve daily tasks such as completing homework or searching and applying for jobs," said Councilman Michael Nowakowski, District 7.  "It is important that we help bridge the digital gap for our public housing recipients through partnerships with our nonprofit and private industry colleagues." </p><p>Many Americans are left behind without internet access, particularly among the populations that HUD primarily serves, including seniors, disabled persons and very low income families. </p><p>"Throughout the next decade, it is expected that 77 percent of jobs will require technology skills that, unfortunately, those who benefit from public housing have had a difficult time accessing.  By applying for and being selected as one of 30 inaugural communities, the city of Phoenix is committed to providing economic opportunities to this population through digital-literacy training and low-cost internet access," said Councilwoman Kate Gallego, District 8. </p><p>According to the Federal Communications Commission less than half of the nation's poorest families have a wired Internet subscription at home and millions lack basic digital literacy.</p><p>The goal of ConnectHome Nation is to expand this program to more than 100 communities by 2020.</p><p><em>For information about the services and programs offered by the Phoenix Housing Department, call 602-262-6794 or visit </em><em>phoenix.gov/housing</em><em>.</em><em>  </em><em>Follow us on Twitter @phxhousing.</em><em>   </em></p></div>8/21/2017 10:00:00 PMAlejandro Montiel, 602-534-3443Housing Department602-262-6794