Comcast offers 60 days of free internet service to low-income households


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Davida Riggins is an Army Veteran and Comcast employee who supports the Internet Essentials program.

Davida Riggins is an Army Veteran and Comcast employee who supports the Internet Essentials program.

Like so many before me and after, my search for a better future led me to the Army. It was a scary prospect, but when I arrived at Ft. Leonard Wood, I was amazed at how many people were like me.

No, they weren’t all Black women, and no, they weren’t all from the suburbs of Philadelphia. But I was surrounded by people teeming with resilience and strength—soldiers who had overcome more challenges and obstacles than one person should have to—who supported one another and took pride in their work, down to the smallest of details. The Army wasn’t a lifelong calling for me, but its core values have been.

In my civilian career, I work for Comcast, a company guided by values instilled by our founder, U.S. Navy Veteran Ralph Roberts.

Those values—integrity, respect, inclusion, and giving back—and a sense of duty to the communities we serve, led Comcast to create Internet Essentials, our low-cost, high-speed Internet program for low-income households.

Those values inform the company’s commitment to hiring 21,000 Veterans and military community members by the end of 2021. And, responding to the COVID-19 public health crisis, Comcast will help connect as many Americans as possible to vital work, health, and social information.

Those same values led Comcast CEO Brian Roberts to pledge a deeper commitment to digital equity as a means for economic mobility. At the center of that commitment is the Internet Essentials program.

Comcast Internet Essentials

Internet Essentials customers receive a high-speed internet service for $9.95 per month + tax. In response to the current COVID-19 health crisis, all new Internet Essentials customers who apply and are approved by December 31, 2020, will receive two months of free service.

They also receive:

  • The option to purchase a subsidized computer for less than $150.
  • Free in-person, online, and printed digital literacy training materials and classes.
Who Qualifies for Internet Essentials?

Individuals qualify if they:

  • Are eligible for public assistance programs, like the National School Lunch Program, housing assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, and others.
  • For a full list of accepted documents, please visit https://www.InternetEssentials.com/get-help.
  • Live in an area where Comcast internet service is available.
  • Have not subscribed to Comcast Internet within the last 90 days (through December 31, 2020, Comcast is temporarily offering amnesty to all households with a past due balance owed to Comcast for the purpose of connecting to Internet Essentials).
  • It’s fast, easy, and simple to apply by visiting InternetEssentials.com on your mobile device, or by calling 1-855-8-INTERNET (1-855-SOLO-995 for Spanish)

Click here to apply

Like many Americans, Veterans depend on the internet to access vital resources like benefits, education and employment. When I transitioned from active duty, I relied on VA and other Veteran-serving organizations for support. I still do, too. VA helped me earn two degrees and purchase a home, things I never thought possible before I joined the Army.

As more Veterans’ services become available online, it’s easier than ever to research and access the benefits we earned by wearing the uniform. From applying for VA benefits to taking online classes, video chatting with doctors, or keeping up with old battle buddies, the list seems endless. Being connected to the Internet, and having the tools and skills to use it, opens up countless possibilities, and Comcast Internet Essentials is a great way to get started.


Army Veteran Davida Riggins is an operations manager at Comcast Business, a leader in the Veterans Network Employee Resource Group, and an active volunteer ambassador for the Internet Essentials program.


The sharing of any non-VA information does not constitute an endorsement of products and services on part of the VA.

Author

VAntagePoint Contributor

— VAntage Point Contributors provide insight and perspective on a wide range of Veterans issues. If you’d like to contribute a story to VAntage Point, learn how you can submit a guest blog at http://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/how-to-submit-a-guest-post/

Comments

  1. Bruce Boutin    

    I never heard of Internet essentials until I came across it on Google. got Wi-Fi from them two years ago explain my situation I was hurt at work awaiting an operation and disabled through the courts. I told him I was a veteran to see if they had any discounts and again was never offered any Internet essentials. my introductory offer expired a year later I called back explain my same situation and now it’s up to over $70 a month. I get no offer was
    I spoken with managers and supervisors and was told that their customer reps or sales departments may not know of this program. there was a very sad thing for them to say, it shows how they don’t even trained the most valuable people to the public to know of programs or if they are obligated which was a question I posed to tell us about this program.
    I decided after getting nowhere with such a conglomerate company to call the FCC
    I called them yesterday and they were extremely happy for me to call in because most people will just put up with what is given and not for what is right and do.
    I recommend anybody and everybody to call don’t do it online call the FCC and file a complaint. I tell him I’m low income, disabled and asked if there was a veteran’s discount never offered never offered never offered Internet
    I asked all the vets and low-income people to call the FCC and file a complaint. The way I look at it they owe me two years worth of money back by not offering the best option possible for their customers.
    maybe after filing are complaints with the FCC and a tourney should set up a class action lawsuit against them for discrimination.
    if we are all that upset with them calling the FCC is the best start I recommend all of you to do it and I hope you do.

  2. Bruce Boutin    

    In 2018 I got injured at work and waiting on operation. I needed Wi-Fi I’m being homebound.
    when they spoke with whether it was an agent or a seals person I explained my situation and that I needed Wi-Fi not to go crazy and they never offered me Internet essentials being disabled or even ask me if I’m on state help or a veteran.
    A year later my introductory offer expired going up to 70 plus dollars and I explained to them I couldn’t afford it I was just living off my disability and $1,200 doesn’t go anywhere. I’m guessing they didn’t offer me Internet
    I’ve spoken with many managers or supervisors with an Xfinity and in order for me to get on Internet essentials I either have to be a new customer or not have had service with their company for 3 months then I can apply for it
    I asked them if it was their policy to offer that program and they said their sales department of customer service reps may not know of this service. The people who are supposed to be helping you and doing the best for you with their product doesn’t know about one of their programs which affects many many
    I’m getting absolutely nowhere with Xfinity or you can call it Comcast.
    something I highly highly recommend is calling the FCC. I did it yesterday and filed a complaint of their wrong doings and it will go through many levels at the FCC before it goes to top dogs at Xfinity. if we get enough complaints at the FCC maybe they’ll change their policies or maybe we should do a class action lawsuit against them for all of their wrong doings. Now they should have offered me that program two years ago and now it would only be $10 a month. maybe they should be made to pay us all back all that money for not asking the right questions to offer customers the best offer available.
    that’s probably why they don’t tell their sales department or customer service raps about this program what they don’t know it can’t offer you so they get more money.
    Shame shame shame on Comcast / Xfinity. You’re a conglomerate and you do not good give sales representatives or your customer representatives are usually rude anyway.
    Again call the FCC to make a complaint they were very happy for me making the complaint most people don’t do it is what they said, they’re kind they’re courteous. Call the FCC don’t file a complaint call them to file a
    Good luck to all the vets and low-income people out there who should fight for what is due as we always should do.

  3. James Potter    

    Why all the uproar? If you accept Comcast, ATT, or any of the IP’s. Just don’t sign a contract. Belly-aching about it helps no-one or anything. Search them out and get the information each can and will offer. You will get nothing, unless you do your homework. Stand up for yourselves or join a support group – or are you still looking for the FREE handout. I too am a veteran of 22 years, and five years in Vietnam, 11 months as a POW, lived with the Montanyards (mountain/jungle tribes for two years. I don’t care what your position in life is, but I do know you can better it, IF you make the effort. Free internet – indeed, sounds like a world crisis……

  4. craig potter    

    Who in the VA approved this SCAM? Give me the person who was the final sign off for this BS. I am tired of uber liberal companies and organizations that target vets for personal gain. Wake up Vets. Pay attention when they want to give you something FREE or at a fantastic price. THAT NEVER HAPPENS.

    1. Ronald    

      Hi Craig.. you are correct.. my Father taught me this.. ANYTHING IN LIFE YOU GET FOR FREE AWAYS ENDS UP COSTING TOO MUCH.. and your are right I too am a Viet Nam error disabled veteran and I forever get offers that I too am not interested in and can not seem to end them because if you asked to be removed it just validates it to be a valid email address so they just sell it to another company.. Thank you for your service too.l

  5. Gary kurowski    

    Why is the internet and TV cable company so high in price in brattleboro vt. To existing customers there should be a freeze on the price concatenation charges

    1. Gary kurowski    

      Comcast ducks let’s go for Turner cable for vetmont

  6. Bruce F    

    I agree. Comcast does nothing but rip people off and their internet is So Slow and Crashes Daily and what do they do? RAISE THEIR PRICES! COMMUNIST-CAST TO ME IS A BIG RIP-OFF!
    During this and other Pandemics and National Emergencies, Cable and internet should Be FREE TO EVERYONE!

  7. THOMAS PARKHILL    

    All of the comments above really prove what vets have known all along…the folks with the money like to hold onto it. Vets have been ignored and mistreated every year since we broke off from King George’s redcoated “enforcers.” I know there must be at least one vendor out there, who is also a vet and has lower rates than Comcast, and who has a real heart for vets and would like to help. Since they probably are not reading this screen, how about someone in the VA organization get busy on the phone and find them? I pay $100 each month for the service I have and since I am not disabled enough to receive much from the VA, and my social security is not great, it hurts. I use it for banking. I could maybe afford to pay $20 per month max for 24 hour internet. Too dumb to use a smartphone, only have a laptop. Is anyone else in this box? (SSGT Army1956-1964).

    1. Howard Dogpile    

      The founder of Comcast was a veteran. His parents were Russian Jewish immigrants who became wealthy owning a string of Pharmacies. He enlisted in the Navy as World War II was beginning, serving at the Philadelphia Navy Yard for the duration of the war. Sounds to me like he was a privileged rich man’s son who spent the four year tour in a pretty safe environment. Now his son, who is Comcast CEO, is promoting his father’s military service as a way to increase Comcast business by offering a very a limited deal to a very limited clientele base in order to boost the Comcast image. In other words, Comcast is using vets to increase business without really helping vets who cannot afford Comcast’s high priced services.

  8. John M Russell    

    Why is the VA doing free ads for them? Who did they buy? If you need free internet who will pay the other 10 months for you? Run Forest run!!!!!!!!

  9. Eddie Albert    

    If I qualify? Compound fracture of both legs in Desert Storm. Served 9 0f 14 years service away from my family. Both sets of grandparents, my mother, my sister all died while I was deployed.

    Do I qualify?
    I passionately despise BS fluff offers some exec puts a “vet program” sticker on to get a feel good from the public. This offer is not especially for veterans. It is only for the poor.

    Comcast, how many vets have you hired during Covid?

  10. Jay Johnson    

    This is just a VA supported commercial for Comcast. No where does it explain a program for disabled Vets. Take it down!
    VA continues to diminish services for Vets. Vets need true low cost internet access, how about working on that?

  11. craig potter    

    Ask COMCAST execs how much was contributed to BLM.

  12. William    

    Yeah rightttttttttt.
    How about a low, cancel no penilty, rate that stays like that for at least 5 years. With no under the radar ad ons.
    Comcast is losing customers due to the games they do with cable TV. How long before it starts hitting the other services.
    My bad already has.
    REAL SAD PART, even the REAL people who work for them know it’s bull
    Probably because their automatic system is dummer than gravel dung.
    More sad they are not alone in being useless

  13. Mat k    

    So comcast thinks low income people are dumb enough to take this deal and sign up for a year service just to get 2 months free? When the total amount owed over the next 10 months is more then other competitive services?

    I guess they are right looking over the comments here.

  14. Jonathan    

    This program I feel is missing a lot. What’s a person to do if they lost their job and got onto services and all of a sudden can’t afford to keep their regular programming. I’m supposed to be 90 days without Internet to rejoin. How do I teleconference with my doctors? Or get news about Covid? I should be able to downgrade if I gualify.

  15. Russell Vaughan    

    They should button their shirt – their heart is busting out!!! Comcast prices are exorbitant. They give similar “deals” to all new customers, then you are stuck with their regular prices!

  16. Lydia Bouza    

    It would be nice if comcast also gave free 2 months service for current customers as well. I know we appreciated the temporary removal of the data caps. Is that going to happen again if we have to have our kids do remote learning? If not could you at least increase the the data cap to 4 terabytes.

    1. Joel    

      This is something that can really help veterans and their families. Most VA services for the moment are held remotely, so these data caps are nuisance. Especially with kids school, work (Me and Spouse), telehealth, online college classes, and some media streaming for entertainment. 1.2 Terabytes can go real fast.

  17. Thomas SunHawk    

    I just want information on the Comcast offer

  18. Matt    

    Good for Comcast but this reduced rate for net access is available from all internet service providers not just Comcast. That is of course if you qualify.

  19. Billy Minniefield    

    Hi. I was wondering if you guys could possibly get Cox cable to provide this service for veterans as well. That would be great. I don’t live in a comcast service area. Cox is the provider for this region.Thank you and have a great day!

  20. MARK AUBREY HENNE    

    I am disabled and owe $1500 I do not have.
    I may lose my house if it is not repaired.
    I notice that my stoke has affected my cognitive abilities more than I knew.
    I currently live in the stable/garage in NJ.
    Although I am happy here I need some repairs made before winter.
    1. Garage door repaired so it opens and closes easily and safely.
    2. Screens installed to keep out the biting bugs.
    3. Electrical repaired so it is safe and efficient.
    4. Plumbing repaired so there are no more leaks.
    5. Toilet and shower installed on my level.
    6. Painting and Carpentry repaired.
    This house was the hotel of Oxford NJ and President George Washington stayed here in the 1700s.
    I am trying to fix everything but $1012/m SSA DOES NOT COVER NEAR ENOUGH

  21. Dylan Crawford    

    What part was about the services being offered to veterans? I just saw low income families.

  22. floyd weathercaster    

    …and others…
    did you run out of ink? What others?

  23. Richard    

    What free internet for disabled vet

  24. Beverly Beal    

    California don’t help all veterans, like us. My husband was 100% unemployable and took it down to 70% but still say we make to much money.. took my Medicaid away cause he was a veteran. Medicare want help me with my medicine because they say he’s a veteran.. Veterans families get hurt in California be they hate veterans.. My granddaughter can’t get Medicaid because my daughter is a veteran but her husbands children have Medicaid.. so unfair

  25. Dorothy E. Carter    

    How is this COMCAST program supposed to help older Veterans who can’t afford the internet? After reading what is necessary to participate it seems to be geared families and children. Many of us older Veterans would like to take advantage of our Healthcare needs virtually with a Computer (using a cellphone is cumbersome and mistakes are easily made.

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