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Sonoma County Library Launches Wi-Fi Programs to Address Digital Divide

Library offers free high-speed access and hotspot lending program.


Sonoma County Library — which serves 500,000 residents with 12 regional libraries, two rural stations and three special collections — created a Wi-Fi program called SonomaFi Connect to address the digital divide for its constituents.


The program supports digital equity for thousands of residents of our county, many of whom struggle financially or live in areas where reliable internet is scarce. The library offers free high-speed Internet at all its locations. This connectivity can be accessed at any time in branch parking lots. The library also launched a Wi-Fi hotspot lending program that allows library patrons to access online resources at home or while traveling. The lending program has been especially valuable to unsheltered and displaced people, some of whom lost their homes to wildfires.


The district recommends the following actions:

  • Determine the community’s needs for online access.
  • Find a reliable hotspot provider and negotiate favorable contracts.
  • Provide clear and simple support for users.