Marginalized Populations

Marginalized populations are those excluded from mainstream social, economic, educational, and/or cultural life. Examples of marginalized populations include, but are not limited to, groups excluded due to race, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, physical ability, language, and/or immigration status.

(August 19, 2022)

Satellite internet is on the way after Arctic fiber cut unplugs part of Alaska

Satellite internet competitors OneWeb and SpaceX are in the running to reconnect Alaskans after ice damaged a sub-sea fiber-optic cable in the Arctic Ocean. While repairs are expected to take an additional six to eight weeks, satellites could help locals weather the widespread outage.

At Nominations Hearing, Sen. Cruz Calls Out Fraud-Risk in Affordable Connectivity Program

The [Federal Communications Commission] exercises tremendous power not only over the media, but also over consumers’ pocketbooks. Through the Universal Service Fund (USF) the agency has imposed burdensome taxes on American consumers to fund inefficient, ever-expanding programs. Nominees must be good stewards of funding and stand up for taxpayers’ interests. Despite being repeatedly excoriated by the [Government Accountability Office] and economists for failing to track where USF money was going, the current FCC leadership failed to learn from past mistakes in setting up the Affordable Conne

Treasury Department Announces Approval of Federal Funds to Connect 33,000 in Washington State

The US Department of the Treasury approved $195.7 million for high-speed internet projects in Washington state from the Capital Projects Fund (CPF).

The Affordable Connectivity Program Needs More Funding to Continue Closing the Digital Divide

High-speed internet service at home is no longer a luxury—it is a necessity.

Why Congress Must Save the Affordable Connectivity Program

The future of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is now at risk. Civil rights organizations have partnered with Congress, the Biden administration, internet service providers, and other stakeholders to spread the word about the ACP so that those who need it most are informed and can get connected. But the future of the ACP is not guaranteed. Congress needs to step up again and ensure adequate funding to continue the program.

Low-Income Americans Benefit From Cheap Internet. So Do Comcast and Charter

In 2021, US lawmakers created a $14.2 billion fund to help low-income families across America pay for internet service they would otherwise struggle to afford. Since then, nearly 19 million households have come to rely on the subsidy — which provides $30 or more in monthly bill aid, helping to narrow the long-standing digital divide that has placed low-income families at a disadvantage for everything from educational services to employment opportunities.

SIA President Tom Stroup Testifies Before House Committee on Agriculture Regarding the Role of Satellites in Bridging the Digital Divide in Rural America

The Satellite Industry Association (SIA) testified on the importance of satellite connectivity before the House Committee on Agriculture hearing titled “Closing the Digital Divide in Rural America.” SIA President Tom Stroup provided testimony on behalf of the Association. “Americans without high-speed internet access are slipping further behind as more and more aspects of American society are conducted online… and too many communities are on the wrong side of the divide,” said Agriculture Committee Chairman Glenn Thompson (R-PA).

WISPA Testifies Before Full House Agriculture Committee on Rural Broadband

WISPA’s President and CEO David Zumwalt commended the House Agriculture Committee and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) for their work in closing the rural digital divide, and offered numerous suggestions on how the 2023 Farm Bill may more effectively narrow the broadband gap, in testimony today before the full Committee. WISPA represents the wireless internet service provider (WISP) industry.

NRECA CEO to Congress: Improve Broadband Programs Crucial to Rural America

Electric cooperatives need Congress to improve critical broadband programs to bring high-speed internet service to rural America, said NRECA CEO Jim Matheson. More than 200 electric co-ops across the US are deploying broadband or developing plans to do so. Matheson asked the committee to make key improvements to broadband programs at the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) as it develops the Farm Bill:

NTCA CEO Shirley Bloomfield Testifies Before U.S. House on Farm Bill Priorities

Shirley Bloomfield, Chief Executive Officer of NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association, testified before the US House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture on NTCA’s broadband priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill.