Veterans' Lifeline phone services threatened.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposed changes to the Lifeline program that will damage the ability of low-income Americans – including 1.3 million veterans – to access essential phone services.
ACT NOW TO PROTECT VETERANS’ LIFELINE PHONE SERVICES

8.3 MILLION AMERICANS WILL LOSE ACCESS TO THEIR CURRENT PHONE SERVICES

70% of Lifeline participants subscribe to non-facilities-based providers. By eliminating these providers, the FCC’s proposal will cause 8.3 million Americans, including hundreds of thousands of veterans, to lose access to their current phone services.

BASIC PHONE SERVICE COSTS WILL INCREASE WHILE SERVICE QUALITY PLUMMETS

If non-facilities-based providers are eliminated, Americans living in 11+ states will be reduced to one or zero wireless Lifeline phone service providers. Due to this significant reduction in market competition, those who still have access to mobile phone services will likely experience decreased service quality and increased costs.

VETERANS IN NEED & OTHER QUALIFIED AMERICANS WILL BE BARRED FROM THE PROGRAM

The FCC’s proposal sets a hard budget cap on the program, which will automatically stop payments once reached. The arbitrary cap would not only cut back phone services for 1.3 million veterans and over 10.7 million other Americans, but it could also prevent individuals who fall on hard times later in the year from accessing them altogether.

UP TO 85% OF LIFELINE SUBSCRIBERS WILL BE UNABLE TO AFFORD PHONE SERVICES

The FCC proposal calls for the establishment of a “maximum discount level” or copay for essential phone services. However, FCC pilot programs show even a modest copay will reduce Lifeline participation by as much as 85% since many recipients either cannot afford to pay or do not have bank accounts from which to pay.