#HighCost of Being Broke

A year into PHLConnectED, Philly has hooked up 18,000 households to the internet

A year after city officials pledged to offer free internet to 35,000 low-income families, they are expected to announce Monday they have thus far connected about 18,720, with plans to include new households through grassroots outreach.

To date, 11,690 households have been connected via Comcast’s Internet Essentials program and an additional 7,030 families received wireless T-Mobile hot spots, according to Philadelphia’s Office of Innovation and Technology. | From: The Inquirer (Read more.)

#HighCost of Being Broke

32 teens died from gunfire this year in Philadelphia. The city and school district are seeking a safe path for students.

With the first day of school less than two weeks away, Philadelphia officials laid out a series of steps to ensure students get to and from school safely after a summer of gun violence. Philadelphia police said 137 victims under the age of 18 have been injured from gun violence this year. Thirty-two have been homicides. | From: Chalkbeat Philadelphia (Read more.)

#HighCost of Being Broke

Jamal Johnson marches to D.C. over Philly gun violence fight

A Philadelphia activist calling on the mayor to do more to fight the gun violence epidemic is marching to Washington, D.C. to see if he’ll have more success getting support from congressional leaders.

“We continue to do just what we’re doing with the mayor. We’re doing it on a national level,” said Jamal Johnson in front of City Hall Monday before starting his trek with more than a dozen supporters cheering him on.

“We continue to cry out to those who are in positions to help us. We just don’t stop. That’s the simple strategy.” | From: WHYY (Read more.)

#HighCost of Being Broke

Southwest Philly block reopens as play street one year after shooting

For the last 60 years, Philadelphia has run its PlayStreets program, which functions both as a city-run summer camp and a free meal distribution program for families. This year, about 260 city streets will be blocked off from traffic and local block captains will distribute meals, backpacks, toys, and games for kids to play with in the street.

For Renell Powell, a retired grandma of four and assistant block captain, last summer’s COVID doldrums proved to be the perfect time to bring a PlayStreet to the 200 block of Alden St. in Southwest Philly.

“I noticed it wasn’t that many places in the area doing it,” Powell said. “I’m retired, and my grandson said, ‘Grandma, why don’t we just try a PlayStreet, give out the lunches?’ I said, ‘OK.’” | From WHYY (Read more.)