OPINION: Government threatens Lifeline Program’s communication services

By Anthony Aguilar

The Federal Communications Commission is trying to dismantle the Lifeline Program from low- income families, people with disabilities, veterans, and more.

The Lifeline Program, according to the FCC, is a “program that has provided a discount on phone service for qualifying low-income consumers.” This program gives Americans opportunities that phone services bring from applying for jobs, emergency services, and up-to-date information such as news.

If the FCC takes away the Lifeline Program, people who are looking for jobs, especially low-income families that are trying to find work, will have a hard time.

Since most job applications must be submitted online, this will affect people who don’t have access to the internet.

Low-income families looking into jobs would like to know a background of the job. This would involve research. However, in the case of the Lifeline Program limiting or stopping access to services, people won’t be able to research information online.

Many companies have phone numbers and emails, however, to find that one has to physically go to the company to get in touch. Many people with disabilities or low income don’t have the funds or means for travel and are not able to reach the company.

Those are the types of people that depend on this lifeline program that gives them access to the internet and telephone services.

Without this, they are missing out on opportunities.

The FCC is also trying to limit people’s use in the Lifeline program. According to the article “Tell the FCC: Leave Lifetime Alone,” it says, “[Chairman of FCC Ajit] Pai is also floating the possibility of a lifetime benefits cap that would cut off funding for the most vulnerable users, like elderly people and people with disabilities, by limiting the amount of time an individual can use the program.”

This limiter will only get the people on the program to miss out on crucial information that changes rapidly, such as news and technology.

In a society where the internet is part of our daily lives, a limiter like this will only hold us back from learning new information that.

The FCC must be stopped from doing any adjustment to this program.

The only adjustment they should be able to do is make any beneficial adjustments for anyone in this program, instead of taking it away from them completely.

For your voice to be heard, especially if you are in this program, please visit https://act.freepress.net/sign/internet_lifeline_fcc/ and leave why it shouldn’t be taken away.

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