NYLAG mobile siteIn October NYLAG upgraded its website to make it more accessible and user-friendly for cell phone users. The navigation is now simplified and “thumb friendly” with large touch points and reduced graphics that don’t interfere when a user is looking for important information. The enhancements were based on a responsive design model, which provides users with easy reading and navigation (no more scrolling, panning or resizing) across a range of devices. This is good news for anyone who accesses our site from their phone, but especially┬áthe clients we serve. Out of necessity, low-income, minority, and urban households are increasingly forgoing traditional internet service in favor of smartphone access only. The upgrade was made possible thanks to a generous donation from the UJA Federation of New York.

www.nylag.org is an important link between families who are unable to afford an attorney and the legal services that NYLAG offers. Unfortunately, as detailed by a recent New York Times Op Ed, there is a growing digital divide between low-income and minority individuals and access to the internet, despite the pervasive impression that everyone is able to take advantage of online resources.

NYLAG mobile site menu

Over the past few years, NYLAG has grown its online and social media presence in order to increase our capacity for web-based outreach and education. The website is a crucial means of drawing referrals to program hotlines, intake lines, and legal clinics. Last year alone, the it had 104,643 unique hits. In addition to providing programmatic and contact information, the website hosts a blog written by staff attorneys and other professionals, and also provides links to NYLAG’s social media accounts. NYLAG currently has 1,774 Twitter followers, 2,674 Facebook likes, and 8,110 subscribers to its email newsletter.

The Pew Research Center, which has been tracking the evolution of device ownership and usage for over a decade, reports that 57% of all Americans go online using their mobile phones; the percentage spikes for non-white and urbanite cell phone owners, at 68% and 66%, respectively. That disparity remains when considering cell-mostly internet users, or those whose primary means of accessing the internet is a cell phone. Many cell-mostly internet users simply do not have the financial option of installing home computers and purchasing broadband internet service, and instead connect cell phones to free public internet hotspots when they can.