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MDHS aims to reduce broadband service costs in Mississippi households

MDHS. Photo by News Mississippi

The Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) has announced plans to partner with the Broadband Expansion and Accessibility of Mississippi (BEAM) to provide aid to households struggling to afford internet service.

According to the MDHS, those looking to lower their broadband service costs can apply for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). If eligible, applicants can receive up to $30 off their broadband service per month and up to $75 off their service if they live on tribal lands.

“BEAM encourages all who are eligible to take advantage of ACP. Connectivity is such a vital part of education, healthcare, and the workforce today. We want all Mississippians to be connected and a part of today’s digital world of opportunities”, stated Sally Doty, BEAM Director.

Additional benefits include a $100 discount per household on a one-time purchase of a computer, laptop, or tablet if the household contributes between $10 – $50 to the purchase through a participating broadband provider.

Here are the eligibility requirements at least one member of the household must meet to qualify for the ACP:

  • Has an income that is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines;
  • Participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, SSI, WIC, or Lifeline;
  • Participates in one of several Tribal specific programs, such as Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal Head Start (only households meeting the relevant income qualifying standard), Tribal TANF, or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations;
  • Is approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision;
  • Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year; or
  • Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating broadband provider’s existing low-income program.

“Connecting Mississippians to tangible help today to create lasting hope for tomorrow is the mission of the Mississippi Department of Human Services. Internet connectivity in the home is an essential resource in preparing students for the workforce of tomorrow,” said Robert G. Anderson, Executive Director of the MDHS.

If interested in enrolling, Mississippians can either submit an online application to AffordableConnectivity.gov, print a mail-in application, or contact their preferred participating broadband provider.

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