How to get discount on home internet access in Memphis

The Affordable Connectivity Program provides lower-income families savings for home online access and a better quality of life.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Local and national organizers worked on solutions Monday to bridge the technology gap and get tens of thousands of Memphis families online with reliable home internet service.

At an event in South Memphis, they enrolled eligible families to get monthly discounts on internet service thanks to the federal Affordable Connectivity Program.

Christina Abston was among the dozens who came to the Emmanuel Center with an open mind and high hopes.

“There’s a lot of us out here that could use this help and afford Internet, i think everyone needs Internet,” Abston said. “That would be great, that would save me a few dollars, it would help.”

The ACP provides lower-income families savings for home online access and a better quality of life.

“I would be able to take care of all my financial needs on the Internet whereas my phone has certain limits that it can do as opposed to desktop or a tablet,” Abston added.

For those who qualify, ACP benefits include up to a $30 a month discount on Internet service, a one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer, or a low-cost service plan that may be fully covered .

“Every penny counts so if it’s going to save me something, yes, I’m for it,” Jean Williams said, who also applied to the program Monday. “However it turns out, full coverage or savings, I’m happy.”

The online access stakes are especially high in the Bluff City.

“It’s as important as electricity or water or a utility, it is not an entertainment service,” Misty Robertson with Communications Workers of America said.

Last year, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said an estimated 20% of Memphians don’t have any internet access. This latest federal program looks to chip away at that number for families who need it the most.

“Through COVID, we found out a lot of families could not afford Internet service which affected them in getting their access to their doctor’s appointments, children had to drop out of school or fall behind because they didn’t have Internet at home,” Robertson added.

Additional informational and sign-up events for the affordable connectivity program are expected in the months ahead by the Memphis Housing Authority.

To find out if you’re eligible or for more information about the program, call 877-789-9889 or click here.

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