DENVER (CBS4) – In many American homes a strong Internet connection is an essential, considered part of the necessary utilities. For families who can’t afford that extra bill, no Internet access means falling into the digital divide.
Comcast sponsors a national effort to bridge the digital divide for low income families, and now they have teamed up with former football coach Tony Dungy to move the chains even farther down the field.
“This is about our community, and we’re all in it together,” Dungy told CBS4.
The Super Bowl-winning former head coach of the Indianapolis Colts, and former coach of current Bronco Peyton Manning, is proud to be a part of Internet Essentials. Dungy has his own foundation which strengthens communities by providing opportunities to those in need.
“I think smart people realize when everybody is doing well, my community is a better place to live,” Dungy explained.
Internet Essentials has provided affordable broadband connections to low-income families since 2011. This year the program will reach 220,000 families nationwide, including approximately 8,000 families in Colorado.
“Affordable Internet really is going to help those families that need access move head. Essentially it will help our economy, it will help our work force of tomorrow. I mean there really are residual benefits in what you and I take for granted in access to the internet,” said Cindy Parsons, vice president of public relations for Comcast.
Internet access has become essential in our everyday lives. Students need to access the Internet so they can check grades and homework assignments. Adults need access to apply for jobs and do research. The more people we can get that access to, Dungy feels will be the more people who are ready to be contributing members of society and he credits Comcast for taking action.
“We’ve got to have consumers down the road and we’ve got to have people that can come in and work for us. So I’m protecting my business when lead the way and do the right things in the community. I’m making it a better place to live,” Dungy explained.
Internet Essentials provides low-cost broadband services for $9.95 a month plus tax; the option to buy an Internet-ready computer for under $150; and free digital literacy training materials.
– Written for CBSDenver.com by Special Projects Producer Libby Smith