On Monday, CWA and consumer advocacy groups sent a letter to major broadband CEOs urging them to lift data caps, waive data cap fees, and take other steps to help the American public stop the spread of the novel coronavirus and facilitate access to essential communications services for all.
"In this collective time of crisis, we are asking broadband CEOs to show leadership by lifting data caps, waiving fees, and doing everything within their power to help people connect to the world from home and stop the spread of COVID-19. People's lives are depending on it," said CWA President Chris Shelton.
Groups signing the letter include Common Cause, Consumer Reports, Fight for the Future, Free Press, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, MediaJustice, National Consumer Law Center, National Hispanic Media Coalition, New America's Open Technology Institute, Public Knowledge, The Utility Reform Network, and United Church of Christ, OC Inc.
"The telecommunications industry must do more to protect consumers and facilitate connectivity during the novel coronavirus pandemic," the organizations wrote. "Connectivity is essential during times of crisis, and during an infectious disease crisis in particular. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, public health officials have recommended 'social distancing,'...This guidance will require a significant shift to tele-work, tele-medicine, and tele-education. This shift necessitates far more bandwidth than under normal circumstances."
The groups made recommendations for Altice, AT&T, CenturyLink, Charter Communications, Comcast, Cox Communications, Frontier Communications, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. Read the full letter here.