Bowling Green, KY (March 18, 2020) – As the effects of coronavirus continue to impact our country, access to high-speed internet is at an all-time high. In the coming weeks, much of the U.S. population will be required to work/learn remotely from home. Charter Communications and other broadband service providers are working hard to keep their customers connected to the internet during the coronavirus pandemic.
Last week, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai launched the “Keep Americans Connected Pledge”. This pledge was established toensure that Americans do not lose their broadband or telephone connectivity as a result of these exceptional circumstances. Charter is one of several internet providers implementing the FCC’s suggested plan to keep more people connected. This includes:
- Not terminating service to any residential or small-business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic;
- Waiving late fees that residential or small-business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic.
Going along with the FCC’s Keep Americans Connected Pledge, onMarch 13, 2020, Charter Communications released its own plan on how they will keep their customers online during the COVID-19 outbreak. According to the release, Charter is committed to ensuring their customers maintain reliable access to the online resources and information they want and need.
For the next 60 days, Charter will commit to the following:
- Offer free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription and at any service level up to 100 Mbps. Installation fees will be waived for new student households.
- Partner with school districts to ensure local communities are aware of these tools to help students learn remotely. Charter will continue to offer Spectrum Internet Assist, a high-speed broadband program for eligible low-income households delivering speeds of 30 Mbps.
- Open its Wi-Fi hotspots across our footprint for public use.
- Spectrum will continue to have no data caps or hidden fees.
Many businesses, restaurants, gyms, and other organizations have been negatively affected from the COVID-19 outbreak, but education was one of the hardest hit. All across the country, schools are changing their curriculum to online learning to prevent the spread of the virus. This creates many challenges for students and teachers who do not have a reliable internet connection at home.
“It is vital for all students in K-12 and college to have equitable access to high-speed internet and technology that supports online learning,” said Danielle Minnis White, special education teacher at KIPP University Prep, San Antonio, TX. “There are multiple factors that affect students, particularly students with disabilities/health needs as well as at-risk (low socio-economic, minority, undocumented, English language learners). Having technology/internet access available outside of school can be the difference between them succeeding in school and dropping out/missing out on a quality education.”
Charter is working to connect as many K-12/college students as they can and is taking the necessary steps to do so, including making a pledge to the FCC to keep Americans connected.
“Charter will continue to closely monitor this dynamic situation and is well-prepared to continue delivering reliable connectivity,” said Cameron Blanchard, Senior Vice President, Communications. “We have extensive business and workforce continuity plans in place that will be adjusted as needed to best serve all our customers and employees.”
To learn more, visit the Connected Nation Coronavirus Response and Resources webpage
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