Letters to the Editor

Bridge the digital divide with Internet Essentials

As thousands of students in South Florida get ready to head back to class next week, they’ll fill their backpacks with things they’ll need to get the new school year off to a great start, like notebooks, folders and pencils.

Although it doesn’t fit inside a backpack, broadband Internet access is also a necessity for families with children heading back to school. In today’s increasingly digital world, the Internet serves as an important educational tool to connect students to resources and information.

Internet Essentials from Comcast, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program, aims to help bridge the digital divide by providing low cost Internet access to qualified families. To date, Comcast has connected nearly 50,000 Florida families or about 200,000 low income Floridians through Internet Essentials. Now through September 20, qualified South Florida families who apply and are approved for Internet Essentials will be eligible for six months of free service.

In addition, Comcast has also created an amnesty program for certain low-income families who could qualify for Internet Essentials, but have a past due balance. Customers who have an outstanding bill that is more than one year old are now eligible for the program.

Comcast will offer amnesty for that debt for the purpose of connecting to Internet Essentials, so long as the customer meets all the other eligibility criteria.

Parents should look for Internet Essentials information from your child’s school, or visit www.InternetEssentials.com or call 1-855-846-8376, or, for Spanish, visit www.InternetBasico.com or call 1-855-765-6995.

Jeanie Hernandez, director, Comcast South Florida Government Affairs & Community Investment, Miami