Letter to the Editor: FCC landline shutdown disadvantages Arizona residents
I just found out that in August of last year, the FCC authorized (www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-grants-relief-outdated-burdensome-phone-industry-regulations) telecom companies to end copper wire landline phone service and switch to phone service that uses the internet. This move affects vulnerable groups in Flagstaff, and if the federal government fails to protect them, the state government should take action.
The FCC Order states that landline service is costly to maintain and is holding us back from transitioning to the next generation of communication technology. However, try explaining this to 1 million seniors in Arizona (www.communityphone.org/landline/az#landline-usage-statistics) who still rely on landline service.
Many seniors struggle with using cell phones, and their internet connection is often unstable. It's unimaginable to think of relying solely on such an unreliable source of communication. Plus, they lose internet access if the power goes out.
The FCC's decision prioritizes the profits of telecom giants over the needs of rural communities, seniors, and those with poor internet connectivity. The Arizona state legislature must act responsibly and speak up for those who are most likely to be left behind in this unnecessary push for "progress."