Communities that couldn't get mortgage loans in the 1940s are the same areas without fast home internet service today. There's no easy fix.
When Christina Wilson moved into Los Angeles public housing with her husband and teenage daughter four years ago, she tried to transfer her internet service plan to her new home. But, as is the case with many low-income communities in the US, the ISP didn't serve the Housing Authority of Los Angeles' Imperial Courts. In fact, no internet service providers offered speedy plans for any of LA's public housing facilities. Instead, they only offered pricey, slow plans insufficient for today's needs.
So the 45-year-old relied on her smartphone's T-Mobile connection for anything she wanted to do online, while her daughter used her phone as a hotspot to attend her virtual film school classes. The mobile devices had unlimited data but came with caveats.
"What we found out with unlimited data is it's still limited because they slow your internet down," Wilson said. "If my daughter's online, doing school, it's terrible waiting all that time."