September 26, 2012 — WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, an ambitious and comprehensive broadband adoption initiative designed to help close the digital divide for low-income Americans, today announced two new partnerships with the U.S. Department of Labor and Connect2Compete. These partnerships will help to further close the digital divide by providing information about Internet Essentials’ digital literacy services to jobseekers and offering low-income families a choice of computer equipment at an affordable price.
“We are excited to partner with the U.S. Department of Labor and Connect2Compete to ensure we have information available about Internet Essentials at American Job Centers and are able to offer affordable computer equipment options for low-income families across the country,” said David L. Cohen, Executive Vice President, Comcast Corporation. “As the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program, Internet Essentials is helping to level the playing field for hundreds of thousands American families.”
The U.S. Department of Labor, under Secretary Hilda Solis’ leadership, has been committed to digital literacy. The new partnership with Comcast will further that commitment by providing information about Internet Essentials at American Job Centers across Comcast’s 39-state footprint. This follows on a partnership announced in July between Secretary Solis and FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski where information for Connect2Compete will be made available in American Job Centers throughout the country.
“As more job postings and job training programs move online, it is crucial that these resources remain accessible for all Americans,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “With strong partners like Comcast, the Connect2Compete coalition is doing just that by improving digital literacy, increasing broadband adoption, expanding free computer access through public libraries and American Job Centers, and putting low-cost, high value computer equipment within reach for thousands of families across the country.”
Comcast will also partner with Connect2Compete to offer Internet Essentials customers an opportunity to purchase a low-cost, high value desktop or laptop through its partner Redemtech, as an alternative to the low-cost netbook currently made available directly through Comcast’s hardware partners.
These programs will be implemented over the course of the fall and continue to leverage the combined audience and expertise of officials from the government and non-profit sectors with Comcast’s Internet Essentials program.
Internet Essentials is available to families with children participating in the National School Lunch Program across Comcast’s service area, which includes 39 states and the District of Columbia. Since the launch of the program with back to school 2011, over 100,000 families – or 400,000 Americans – have enrolled, and over 11,000 discounted computers have been distributed.
For general information about Internet Essentials, please visit www.internetessentials.com for English and visit www.internetbasico.com for Spanish. Educators or third-parties interested in helping to spread the word can find more information at www.internetessentials.com/partner. Parents looking to enroll in the program can call 1-855-846-8376 or, for Spanish, 1-855-765-6995.