Libby Schaaf
Former Mayor | Oakland, CA


Idea Category: Broadband, Equity & Opportunity


The lack of broadband access disproportionately impacts individuals and families of color and those whose incomes are below the federal poverty threshold. According to existing research, just 71% of Black and 65% of Hispanic adults have home broadband compared to 80% of white adults. The lack of internet access can negatively impact health outcomes, employment opportunities, and education attainment.


Under the leadership of Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, #OaklandUndivided, the city’s initiative to connect every student, partnered with Education SuperHighway to successfully pilot a replicable model of providing free WiFi to disconnected students and tenants in five subsidized low-income apartment buildings. The initiative involves installing and maintaining a single WiFi network for the entire building, similarly to a hotel, at a low monthly cost for the landlord and no cost to the residents. Additionally, this effort led to the creation of broadband adoption centers to provide one-on-one support and enrollment assistance programs to help residents sign up for the apartment WiFi and other available resources. The program has successfully connected 96% of Black students and 97% of Latinx students in the Oakland Unified School District.

More Idea’s From Libby Schaaf

Mayor Libby Schaaf: Education Investments to Change Lives

Idea Category: Education, Equity & Opportunity | Funding Source: ARP

Keys to Equity: Building ADUs for Oakland

Idea Category: Equity & Opportunity, Housing | Funding Source: ARP

Mobile Mayor

Idea Category: Smart Government | Funding Source: ARP

Will Jawando | County Councilmember | Montgomery County, MD

Home Act/Rent Stabilization

2023 Ideas Challenge Entry Montgomery County Councilmember Will Jawando authored the Housing Opportunity, Mobility, and...