San Antonio

‘If we can’t afford it we can’t get it’: New federal program to provide low-cost internet for millions of families

More than 40 million Americans are eligible for the Affordable Connectivity Program, which may lead to $30 a month or much less internet payments.

SAN ANTONIO — Mary Ann Resendez and her husband take care of 5 kids in San Antonio, so having dependable in-home internet entry is crucial for day by day dwelling.

But staying linked is a problem for millions of Americans.

“There’s so many things with the internet and to be able to afford it, would be even better,” Resendez mentioned. “If we can’t afford it we can’t get it so either we just do without and stick with what we’re able to use which is our phone.”

The White House rolled out an answer this week for greater than 40 million eligible Americans by way of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).

The program supplies certified households $30 per 30 days off their internet payments. ACP additionally includes the partnership of 20 main internet suppliers, that are providing internet plans for not more than $30 per 30 days.

Some families could also be eligible for free high-speed internet in the event that they pair their ACP profit with one of the plans.

Qualifications vary from numerous earnings ranges resembling a household of three making $46,060 a year or a household of 8 making $93,260 yearly.

Other method to qualify embrace being a recipient of SNAP advantages, SSI, veterans advantages and receiving Medicaid.

“To hear President Biden say that that he’s going to implement a program that will bring internet connectivity to everyone that needs it and doesn’t have it is very exciting and actually a long time coming,” mentioned Jo Ana Alvarado, director of modern expertise on the San Antonio Housing Authority (SAHA).

Alvarado mentioned the pandemic emphasised the necessity for internet entry locally for work and college life.

SAHA has labored to bridge the digital divide by providing free public Wi-Fi in any respect of its properties for greater than 5 years.

The objective is to guarantee everyone seems to be linked by June or July.

“We’re in a digital economy and everything is going toward needing to be connected, whether it be education, looking for a job, being able to do telehealth from home,” Alvarado mentioned.

As for Resendez, she’s all for the brand new federal program if it means she will be able to sooner or later obtain her dream of changing into a nurse.

“Right now, I’m a stay at home mom so I do want to go back to school and be able to help my husband provide for my family.”

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