The National Hispanic Media Coalition applauds House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on the passing of an Emergency Broadband Benefit as a part of the larger Congressional COVID-19 Relief Package. The Emergency Broadband Benefit is a historic victory over the Digital Divide, which disproportionately affects Latinx and BIPOC communities.
The Coronavirus Pandemic continues to make one thing clear: our communities need reliable, affordable access to the internet at home. Access to the internet is essential to our everyday lives, including the education, healthcare, and economic opportunities that directly impact our community’s well being and long-term prosperity. Though the end of this pandemic seems to be on the horizon, Latinx and BIPOC communities still face increased risk of infection, death, and corresponding economic downturn. Access to the internet at home is key for those who need to work and learn from home to ensure safety of their loved ones.
Our families should not face a choice between putting food on the table and paying their internet bills. Though we recognize the need for increased funding for internet access beyond Congress’ proposed $50 monthly credit, NHMC commends Congress for taking a step towards digital justice by saying access to the internet is a priority for the people of the United States during this time.
Today, we acknowledge that the stimulus is at least taking one small step in the right direction for the digital rights of the Latinx community and marginalized communities. We look forward to continuing our advocacy for access to the internet as a human right in 2021.
Yours in the Movement,
Brenda Victoria Castillo
President & CEO
National Hispanic Media Coalition