Ludington Library Reopens Access to Computers, Addressing Need for Reliable Internet

On Monday, the Ludington Library reopened their computers for people who may not have reliable internet at home.

Director of the Ludington Library Eric Smith says being closed to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic has created a barrier for people who may not otherwise have access to the internet.

“Lives are more complicated every day and especially as things expire, services that we have to offer fill in those gaps,” says Smith.

That’s why he’s teamed up with United Way of Mason County to provide internet access to families and students through hot spots. A resource that Executive Director of United Way Lynne Russell says will be essential to students come fall.

“We are still trying to figure out how we can all help each other out for children who choose to not go back directly to school but to stay home and work remotely or if they need a safe place to be,” says Russell.

Ludington Area Community Schools Coordinator Becky Erickson says a lot of families struggle to afford internet service right now.

“I work primarily in the Ludington district, so most of our families have access to the internet but affording it now has become essential,” says Erickson. “When I think for most of our families, it was discretionary or something, they could go without prior to the COVID pandemic.”

Smith says he hopes reopening the computers at the library brings them one step closer to addressing the needs of the community.

“The library is a great resource for students, and we are working with the school districts to try to supplement the curriculum and make sure that we have print and digital resources that build a culture of literacy in our community,” says Smith.

Space inside the Ludington Library is limited right now with four people inside with two computers, but they’re working to develop programs for families and students come the school year.