Our goal at EveryoneOn is to end the digital divide. To accomplish this, we support and advocate for future-facing policies and laws that will ensure that everyone living in the United States is connected to affordable high-speed internet. Our policy stances include:
The Lifeline Program
The Lifeline program, funded through the Universal Service Fund, provides low-income individuals a $9.25 monthly subsidy towards their internet payments to eligible broadband providers. In 2016, under then chairman Tom Wheeler, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) planned an extensive modernization of the Lifeline program that would increase its reach by expanding the list of broadband providers that could participate in the program and establishing national eligibility criteria.
Following his appointment in early 2017, current FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has worked extensively to restrict and weaken the program, with limited support from the social sector, state governments, and the telecom industry. The program that originally could have provided internet connectivity to millions of those most in need in the United States is now being gutted in all but name.
The Lifeline program must be protected. Working with fellow organizations and coalitions, EveryoneOn is committed to fighting Pai’s proposed changes to the program and the re-instatement of the 2016 Lifeline Modernization Order.
Since shortly after his inauguration in 2017, President Donald Trump has regularly cited the need for increased investment in broadband infrastructure, particularly in rural parts of the United States where infrastructure and coverage are limited. Despite claims that his infrastructure bill would include rural broadband infrastructure as a specific funding line item, President Trump’s spending bill merely included rural broadband as an eligible spending category for state grants, not a national priority.
EveryoneOn supports the implementation and rollout of broadband infrastructure in short order to ensure that all areas of the country have access to affordable high-speed internet connectivity. A more comprehensive infrastructure spending bill is required to reduce the costs of infrastructure deployment. Furthermore, there should be both state and federal-level funds reserved for testing new forms of technology.