The FCC has just unanimously voted to approve a relief program that will give up to $50 off the internet bills of low-income households. This extra boost is part of the $3.2 billion Emergency Relief Program that was approved by Congress in December.
The program will provide up to $50 a month for qualifying low-income households for broadband service and $75 a month to households on Native American land. Plus, customers can get a one-time $100 credit toward the purchase of a computer or tablet.
“This is a program that will help those at risk of digital disconnection,” FCC acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement Thursday. “It will help those sitting in cars in parking lots just to catch a Wi-Fi signal to go online for work. It will help those lingering outside the library with a laptop just to get a wireless signal for remote learning.”
Fast and reliable internet has proved to be a big problem, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. With more people working from home and children doing online schooling, internet equity has been more important than ever.
The FCC has yet to roll out the qualifying process for the program, as well as find a willing internet service provider to partner with. However, Rosenworcel says the subsidy will be available within 60 days.