FCC BROADBAND PLAN MUST REACH COMMUNITIES OF COLOR

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media contact: Sam Goldsmith, The TASC Group
Ph: 646-723-4344; Email: sam@thetascgroup.com

FCC Broadband Plan Must Reach Communities of Color
CSI applauds efforts to expand Universal Service Fund; calls for guidelines to prioritize local broadband and community-scale networks; serve communities of color

October 11, 2011 – New York, NY: The Center for Social Inclusion (CSI) applauds the Federal Communications Commission’s efforts to expand the Universal Service Fund (USF) to subsidize broadband Internet service in unserved areas. CSI, a public policy organization that works to transform inequity into opportunity for communities of color, asks the FCC to create guidelines that ensure a transparent and equitable broadband build out.

If implemented correctly, the USF could correct the digital apartheid that exists in communities of color. A recent study by CSI shows the mostly black zip codes in the Mississippi Delta are most in need of subsidized broadband build out, with 27 percent of the population offline. People of color represent 68% of the population in these zip codes.

Large telecoms have failed to bring high speed Internet to these communities. USF guidelines should prioritize subsidies for local and regional Internet service providers who have stakes in the communities they serve and are committed to boosting local economies and advancing educational, health and other community goals .

“FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has many of the right goals. Broadband can be the solution to digital apartheid. By supporting community scale broadband, the FCC can push for innovation and competition while ensuring all Americans get the services we need.” said Maya Wiley, Executive Director of the Center for Social Inclusion.

To arrange an interview with Maya Wiley or learn more about Internet inequality, contact Sam Goldsmith at The TASC Group. Phone: 646-723-4344; Email: sam@thetascgroup.com.

About the Center for Social Inclusion:
The Center for Social Inclusion works to unite public policy research and grassroots advocacy to transform structural inequity and exclusion into structural fairness and inclusion. We work with community groups and national organizations to develop policy ideas, foster effective leadership, and develop communications tools for an opportunity-rich world in which we all will thrive. Visit www.centerforsocialinclusion.org.

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