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Expanded broadband resources for the Latino community

 

Access to broadband impacts the wellbeing of the Latino community, our economic mobility, and our resilience during a global health crisis.

As our lives continue to be disrupted, vital services including unemployment benefits, distance learning options, access to critical telehealth options, and monetary relief as a part of the Congress’ recently approved stimulus package have all moved online and accessing its benefits are dependent on a family’s ability to connect to the internet.

Despite the significant challenges faced by low resourced front line communities, HTTP also believes that this is an important opportunity to work collaboratively with internet service providers to ensure that the Latino community isn’t left behind by facilitating information sharing on free and low cost at home broadband connection options.

The Covid19 global crisis has created a unique opportunity for low income families to subscribe to at home broadband for little or no costs thanks to the leadership of the country’s largest internet service providers offering unprecedented connection opportunities for those most vulnerable during this time of crisis.

Verizon

  • Offering new affordable internet plans for low-income households. Qualified customers can purchase Fios 200/200Mbps home internet service for just $19.99/month with a free year of Disney+ and no router rental charges for two months.

  • Waiving wireless data overage charges to support customers who may be financially affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Offering unlimited domestic calling to wireless customers on limited-minute plans through April 30.

  • Verizon to give customers learning tools and premium TV at no additional cost

  • Students get free access for 60 days to valuable learning and interactive study tools

  • Verizon will donate $2.5 million to Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a national nonprofit that has invested $20 billion to fuel economic opportunity for people and communities across America.

AT&T

  • Unlimited AT&T Home Internet – All AT&T consumer home internet wireline customers, as well as Fixed Wireless Internet, can use unlimited internet data. Additionally, we’ll continue to offer internet access for qualifying limited income households at $10 a month through our Access from AT&T program. We’ve expanded eligibility to Access from AT&T to households participating in the National School Lunch Program and Head Start. Additionally, we’re offering new Access from AT&T customers two months of free service.

  • Distance Learning – AT&T is underwriting expenses for a “one-stop” resource center to support eLearning Days from the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) available to all educators in schools to help them handle school closures and the increase in virtual learning due to COVID-19. Along with newly established $10M Distance Learning & Family Connections Fund.

  • Serving Those who Serve – AT&T is redirecting more resources to provide communication services and tools for first responders, health care professionals, educators and other essential customers. This additional support will help ensure these customers can continue providing critical support to the country and their communities, particularly to first responders using the FirstNet network.

  • Temporary Pay Increase for Front Line Employees: 20% bonus above the regular hourly base rate of pay to bargained-for frontline employees for all time worked in the office or at home. That bonus will be included in their regular rate of pay for purposes of calculating overtime rates. CWA recognized AT&T’s efforts as a model for other corporations to follow.

Comcast/NBCUniversal/Telemundo

  • Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers. For a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots, visit www.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, consumers should select the “xfinitywifi” network name in the list of available hotspots, and then launch a browser.

  • Pausing Our Data Plan: With so many people working and educating from home, we want our customers to access the internet without thinking about data plans.  While the vast majority of our customers do not come close to using 1TB of data in a month, we are pausing our data plans for 60 days giving all customers Unlimited data for no additional charge.

  • No Disconnects or Late Fees: We will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Our care teams will be available to offer flexible payment options and can help find other solutions.

  • Internet Essentials Free to New Customers: As announced yesterday, it’s even easier for low-income families who live in a Comcast service area to sign-up for Internet Essentials, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program. New customers will receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service, which is normally available to all qualified low-income households for $9.95/month. Additionally, for all new and existing Internet Essentials customers, the speed of the program’s Internet service was increased to 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. That increase will go into effect for no additional fee and it will become the new base speed for the program going forward.

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