Georgia Tech’s Center for Advanced Communications Policy (CACP) submitted reply comments to the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) Notice of Inquiry (NOI) In the Matter of Implementing the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: Prevention and Elimination of Digital Discrimination [GN Docket No. 22-69]. The FCC’s NOI sought information on whether the identified demographic characteristics (income level, race, ethnicity, color, religion, or national origin) in the Infrastructure Act represented all the features that should be considered when developing targeted policies that address digital discrimination.
CACP asserted that disability status should be included in the listed characteristics of Americans that should be protected against digital discrimination. Moreover, as disability status intersects across other marginalized identities, including race and socioeconomic status, we emphasize that these individuals who share intersectional identities are experiencing increased disadvantages. To illustrate this point, we showed that many individuals with disabilities have monetary caps on their monthly income, which may not always align with the current federal poverty level. Still, this monetary income cap often aligns with the poverty threshold. We further noted that recent data indicates that approximately 27% of people with disabilities live in poverty. Throughout our reply comments, we concurred with other stakeholders that accessibility to and affordability of broadband services must be at the forefront of the conversation in eliminating digital discrimination. To read the full comments, follow this link: file:///C:/Users/mz22/Downloads/CACP%20NOI%20Reply%20Comments_Preventing%20Digital%20Discrimination_Final.pdf