FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 3, 2017
FCC Decision to Block Nine Companies From Fulfilling Commitment to Low-Income Subscribers Disadvantages People of Color
On Friday afternoon, Federal Communications Commission released an order revoking nine lifeline broadband provider designations, despite already being approved. Lifeline offers a modest discount to low-income families struggling to afford basic landline or wireless phone service and broadband internet. The National Hispanic Media Coalition today release the following statement from Carmen Scurato, director of policy and legal affairs:
“We have companies who want to offer thousands of low-income Americans a pathway out of poverty with affordable internet service and it appears that Chairman Pai is standing in their way. We are beyond disappointed that the new Chairman has chosen to direct precious Commission time and resources to an action so antithetical to the Commission’s mission–and so early in his term. If the Chairman wants to make real inroads to bridge the digital divide, he must allow and encourage service providers to participate in the Lifeline Program. Economic progress and educational opportunity are bipartisan and we urge policymakers to remember that the reckless decisions they try to hide on a Friday afternoon are continuing to disadvantage the half of all Latino households and 40 percent of African American homes that remain offline.”
The National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC) is a media advocacy and civil rights organization for the advancement of Latinos, working towards a media that is fair and inclusive of Latinos, and towards universal, affordable, and open access to communications. Receive real-time updates on Facebook, Twitter @NHMC and Instagram @NHMC_org.