Covid has shown the clear issues with the unequal/variable quality of the education system. This has been further exacerbated by the damaging and increasing effects of technology poverty. From lack of equipment and access to the internet, to the difference in quality of at-home/online education provided by schools, as well as parents‚’ availability. Those children with access to the internet, a laptop, and parents who have more availability to support them during home-schooling will be far less impacted by covid than those without. This divide should not exist.
The same is true for adults – those with access to the internet are far more able to access knowledge and remote services during covid, those without (often the most disadvantaged in society) have then been disadvantaged further and so the poverty and inequality gap widens.
As governments move to provide technical solutions to society’s problems, they significantly increase the poverty divide and inequality across the UK. For example, the NHS COVID-19 app – even though scientifically this won‚’t need 100% uptake to be effective in halting some of the spread of covid, it creates a clear divide between those who have the wealth and therefore opportunity to use such an app and partake in helping to prevent the spread of covid. We take away this opportunity from those without the wealth to afford the most recent phone technology to be a part of this – to not have the choice to even partake in a government led solution. Further, if this occurs in areas with more inequality then no doubt those areas will have higher illness from covid – a poverty cycle! If the government wants to provide technical solutions to society’s problems, then they need to make the first priority ensuring everyone has equal opportunity to access such solutions.