In response to the COVID-19 crisis, Vermont broadband providers have opened over 10,000 free WiFi hotspots throughout the state, giving thousands of students, parents and workers across the state access to fast and reliable internet to help them work, learn and shop. These providers were among the first to create responses to the COVID-19 emergency and made the decision to open the hotspots several weeks ago.
“Broadband internet access and service is providing the backbone of our economy in Vermont, in New England and across the country. Expanding access to internet and making hotspots available for free will provide needed access to information, connectivity to work and distance learning and access to home support services during this challenging economic time,” said Tim Wilkerson, President and CEO of the New England Cable and Telecommunications Association (NECTA). “Our member companies are stepping up to serve not just our customers, but others in the broader community who need access to high-speed broadband.”
In addition to opening thousands of free WiFi hotspots and continuing to meet increased consumer demand, NECTA members have announced a series of new measures to expand internet access for individuals and families who need it most, including low-income families and those with students now taking classes from home. Additionally, every NECTA member company has signed the FCC’s “Keep Americans Connected Pledge” to ensure that their customers will remain connected throughout the COVID-19 crisis.