State of Hawaii’s Digital Equity Plan Opens for Public Comment Period

Posted on Oct 2, 2023 in News

For Immediate Release: October 2, 2023

Hawaii residents are urged to share their feedback and manaʻo on the draft Hawaii Digital Equity Plan

HONOLULU—The State of Hawaii Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT)’s Hawaii Broadband and Digital Equity Office (HBDEO) has spent much of 2023 meeting with community members and organizations to provide information on the development of the state’s first digital equity plan. With the first draft now complete, Hawaii residents can now share their feedback and provide their manao on the plan and its recommendations during a 30-day public comment period. The draft of the Hawaii Digital Equity Plan is available for public comment through October 31, 2023 at Hard copies of the feedback survey are available at all the state public libraries. Responses can be mailed to: HBDEO, P.O. Box 2359, Honolulu, HI 96804, Attn: Burt Lum, State Digital Equity Coordinator.

To share the plan with the public, the project team presented the draft at the state’s first digital equity gathering, an in-person Digital Equity Hoike at the Sheraton Kauai in Kapaa. The event will be conducted in conjunction with Digital Inclusion Week, which this year takes place October 2 through 6, and is an annual week of awareness, recognition, and celebration in which organizations and individuals across the country host special events, run social media campaigns, and share their digital inclusion actions and progress with others.

“This Digital Equity Plan is Hawaii’s next step towards achieving digital equity and we are excited to welcome communities across the state to be a part of this important effort,” said Lieutenant Governor Sylvia Luke. “We mahalo those who have given generously of their time and manao to participate in focus groups and interviews. The project team appreciates this valuable input and encourages all Hawaii residents to review and share their thoughts on how we can put forth a plan that will make life better for all our residents.”

Digital equity objectives include the availability and affordability of both fixed and wireless broadband; the accessibility and inclusivity of online public resources and services; digital literacy; awareness and use of security and online privacy and cybersecurity; and the availability and affordability of consumer devices and technical support for those devices.

Comments or questions on the plan can be directed to 808-587-9001 or emailed to [email protected]. Feedback received will be carefully reviewed, synthesized, and incorporated as appropriate to enrich the Hawaii Digital Equity Plan. The final version will be available in November following the end of the public comment period at

About Hawaii Broadband and Digital Equity Office (HBDEO):
HBDEO was established within the State of Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism with a mission to support and coordinate statewide deployment of high-speed internet access (broadband) and to achieve the goals of digital equity and adoption for all residents of Hawaii. HBDEO’s functions include the coordination, implementation, promotion, funding and managing of programs that ensure the equitable distribution of digital technologies and provide pathways to maximize Hawaii’s competitiveness in the digital economy.

About Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT):
DBEDT is Hawaii’s resource center for economic and statistical data, business development opportunities, energy and conservation information, and foreign trade advantages. DBEDT’s mission is to achieve a Hawaii economy that embraces innovation and is globally competitive, dynamic and productive, providing opportunities for all Hawaii’s citizens. Through its attached agencies, the department fosters planned community development, creates affordable workforce housing units in high-quality living environments and promotes innovation sector job growth.

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Laci Goshi
Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism
(808) 518-5480

Crystal Yamasaki
(808) 389-2890
Crystal Clear Communications