June 29, 2020 — Press Release

Washington, D.C. The National Consumer Law Center commends the leadership of U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, who joined with Senators Richard Blumenthal, Mazie Hirono, and Chuck Schumer to introduce The Emergency Broadband Connections Act of 2020, which would help low-income households afford home broadband service.

“Black, Hispanic, American Indians and Alaska Natives have lower broadband subscription rates than their White counterparts and communities of color have been hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis,” said Olivia Wein, staff attorney at the National Consumer Law Center.  “The Emergency Broadband Connections Act of 2020 will enable telemedicine, distance learning, and online access to the workplace and marketplace for tens of millions of struggling low-income families and unemployed workers while protecting public health during the COVID-19 crisis. The bill also includes urgently needed enhancements to the federal Lifeline program to ensure that this service can meet the voice and data needs of low-income consumers during the pandemic,” said Wein.

The bill is also cosponsored by Sens. Brian Schatz, Kirstin Gillibrand, Edward Markey, Bernie Sanders, Sherrod Brown, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Jeff Merkley, Robert Menendez, Amy Klobuchar, Richard Durbin, Tammy Baldwin, Tina Smith, Chris Van Hollen, Michael Bennet,  Jacky Rosen, Patty Murray, Elizabeth Warren, Ben Cardin, Tom Udall, Jack Reed, Martin Heinrich, and Tammy Duckworth.

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