Comcast expands low-income internet access program to include veterans

"Job training and digital literacy are key to sustaining our at-risk veterans in their homes."

Tim Jimenez
August 13, 2018 - 1:34 pm
U.S. Olympic Gold medalists Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson and Monique Lamoureux-Morando, who are Comcast ambassadors, join Comcast Senior VP David Cohen and Mayor Jim Kenney.

Tim Jimenez/KYW Newsradio

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Comcast officials announced Monday that their Internet Essentials program, which helps connect low-income families to the internet, is now expanding to help veterans in need. 

Comcast Senior Executive Vice President David Cohen, with Mayor Jim Kenney and other city officials on hand, made the announcement at the former Edison High School building at 7th and West Somerset streets in the Fairhill section of North Philadelphia. The property is being transformed into "Edison 64" — a place for dozens of homeless veterans to live.

"We're expanding eligibility of this program to all low-income veterans living in our service area around the country," Cohen said. "About 70 percent do not have internet access at home, and that's the gap that we're going to try to address here." 

Cohen said around 1 million veterans would be eligible, around 36,000 in Pennsylvania alone. 

Tim Williams, the executive director of the Veterans Multi-Service Center expressed optimisim that the program will be vital for veterans in need. 

"Having achieved success in placing veterans in housing, we must continue to do so and do even more. We must focus on sustainability," Williams said. "Job training and digital literacy are key to sustaining our at-risk veterans in their homes."

Comcast says 6 million low-income Americans now have access to affordable internet service because of the program, which is now in its seventh year. 

"In the last year we've actually added 2 million more people to the internet, and we've now connected more than 6 million low-income Americans, 1.5 million households, to the internet at home. Most of them for the first time in their lives," Cohen said. 

KYW Newsradio and Comcast Internet Essentials are promotional partners.