If you’ve read the article on page 1A pertaining to the end of federal funding for the Community Access Program (CAP), then you know there is cause for concern.
The over half a million Federal Government dollars supplied to this province was vital to this program. This funding, in combination with another $400,000 from the Provincial Government, meant people from all walks of life had access to computers and wireless Internet access for personal, educational, research and even business needs.
Without consultation - according to representatives of the Lewisporte Memorial Public Library - the Federal Government pulled the plug on this all too important funding.
The following can be found on the Industry Canada website under the frequently asked questions regarding the CAP program:
CAP was launched in 1995 when the Internet was in its infancy. It was then increasingly evident that the Internet would be critical to Canada’s future competitiveness. The objective of the program was to encourage participation in the knowledge-based economy by maximizing the accessibility of computers and the Internet at public access points, such as public libraries, across Canada.
In 1995, only 40 per cent of Canadian households had a computer and only about 10 per cent of these households had Internet access. By contrast, in 2010 about 79 per cent of Canadians had access to the Internet at home. Today, with the advent of smart phones, many Canadians have access to the Internet in their hands.
In addition, following the completion of the Broadband Canada: Connecting Rural Canadians program in the summer of 2012 - and taking into account other provincial and private sector initiatives, fewer than 2 per cent of Canadian households will be without access to basic broadband service of 1.5 megabits per second.