By Broderick Johnson
Submitted by Comcast Corporation
As we enter the summer and kids are home from school, I’m thrilled to join friends and colleagues across our industry and from partner organizations to kick off the ACP Week of Action, which starts today. The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) has grown to become a cornerstone of the future of accessible and affordable broadband in this country.
Earlier today, the administration officially launched the Online For All campaign with an event in Towson, Maryland at the local branch of the Baltimore County Public Library. During the event, White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu and FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel underscored the importance of the ACP and challenged all of us to reach even more people with the program, which provides a $30 per month credit ($75 per month on Tribal lands) toward Internet bills.
Just this year, we provided a grant to the library to train Digital Navigators, and an additional grant to the Community College of Baltimore County to employ these local experts to help folks get connected.
$11.4M in grants awarded in 2022 for ACP awareness and Digital Navigators
225+ organizations supported around ACP and broadband adoption efforts
We are proud to serve as the founding partner of the new Civic Nation and U.S. Department of Education campaign, Online For All, which will supercharge efforts across government, private industry, nonprofits, and community partners nationwide to connect more people to the Internet.
While it’s impressive that more than 18.5 million households have signed up for the ACP benefit so far, the next phase of this effort will be more challenging. With more than 31 million households eligible for the ACP, but not yet enrolled, our attention must now turn toward broadband adoption.
Comcast’s decade of experience working in this space has given us the data and know-how to pursue this task head-on. Through Project UP, we have a network of hundreds of partner organizations across our footprint, working in cities and towns from coast to coast on broadband adoption and ACP awareness.
In fact, in 2022 alone, Comcast invested $11.4 million in more than 225 nonprofits and community-based organizations to raise awareness of, and drive sign-ups for, the ACP. And that includes investing in training and deploying Digital Navigators, a key piece of the solution. As trusted local experts, usually associated with existing organizations like churches and community centers, Digital Navigators can get folks signed up for Internet service, connect them with devices, and show them the rules of the road when it comes to staying safe online.
Which brings us to this ACP Week of Action. Together with other companies and partners, we’re joining the activation from June 14-22 to shine a light on the truly transformative nature of the ACP – connecting people to the Internet at virtually no cost to them, especially those who can benefit most. I’ve seen this firsthand as I’ve visited the communities we serve to learn more.
For the week of action, Comcast is continuing to work with national and local partners to drive participation in the ACP. We’re hosting events to drive ACP enrollment, embedding connectivity information into other events we’re sponsoring, and sharing stories of our customers whose lives have changed with low or no-cost Internet.
Check out a sampling of over 100 events Comcast is participating in during the week of action and beyond below:
Broderick Johnson is Executive Vice President, Public Policy and Executive Vice President, Digital Equity for Comcast Corporation.
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is one of the nation's largest video, high-speed Internet and phone providers to residential customers under the XFINITY brand and also provides these services to businesses. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures and Universal Parks and Resorts.
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