FCC Proposal Fails To Include Net Neutrality Protections Or Address The Digital Divide

Advancing Justice | AAJC Committed to Fighting for a Free and Open Internet
For Immediate Release
Michelle Boykins (202) 296-2300, ext. 0144 mboykins@advancingjustice-aajc.org

Washington, DC— November 22, 2017 — Today Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai released a draft proposal to reclassify the internet as an information service under Title I of the Communications Act. This reclassification will result in, among other things, the removal of enforceable net neutrality protections for consumers.

In response, John C. Yang, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC, issues the following statement:

“Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC is deeply concerned that today’s proposal does not include net neutrality protections or address the digital divide that exists for the Asian American community. 

Advancing Justice | AAJC remains committed to a free and open internet. Our submitted comments to the FCC in August reiterated our support for certain key principles that we called on the Commission to consider when determining how best to regulate internet service providers. These principles include: transparency, no blocking, no throttling, and no discriminatory paid prioritization. Before voting on this proposal in December, we urge either the FCC to address the concerns we raised in our submitted comments or for Congress to act and pass strong, clear Net Neutrality protections into law.

In our reply comments, we also pointed out that the debate over which legal framework should regulate broadband internet access service (BIAS) failed to address the digital divide that exists in the Asian American community. The future belongs to those who are connected, and our community has long seen the advantages of having broadband access. Yet, there are so many within the broader Asian American family who struggle to have access to adequate broadband services. This impacts their ability to complete schoolwork, access critical services, and practically function in society.  

As such, Advancing Justice | AAJC reiterates our call for the Commission to study the effects of the classification of BIAS as an information service or common carrier on the Asian American community prior to any vote. We will continue to monitor the impact the Commission’s proposed regulatory framework has on the consumers, independent entrepreneurs, and small businesses within our community.

Today, we call upon Congress to provide a real bipartisan legislative solution and to pass strong, clear net neutrality protections into law. Our community deserves certainty.”