FCC Enlists AmeriCorps for DTV Outreach

Mar 27, 2009  •  Post A Comment

The Federal Communications Commission has partnered with AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps on a digital transition outreach effort.
Forty-nine cities believed to be less prepared for the DTV switch have been targeted for the outreach effort. AmeriCorps NCAA members will help individuals in those cities who may be having trouble switching to digital television by the June 12 deadline.
For TVWeek’s comprehensive coverage of the digital television transition, visit the DTV Switch Navigator page.
The group will focus on groups that the FCC has determined need special attention, which include low-income individuals, minorities, non-English speakers, senior citizens, individuals with disabilities and people living in rural or tribal areas.
The interagency agreements will allow AmeriCorps to visit homes to help install digital converter boxes, help consumers apply for $40 converter box coupons, make presentations at community events and serve at walk-in DTV help centers.
Groups of eight to 12 AmeriCorps NCCC members will work under FCC area coordinators after undergoing training. The first team will begin training next week in the test market of Denver, where several TV stations plan to switch to digital TV signals by mid-April.
“The FCC is grateful for the assistance from AmeriCorps NCCC, an organization committed to public service, as we focus our DTV education efforts on individuals who may find the transition to digital television particularly difficult,” Michael Copps, acting FCC chairman, said in a statement. “This fine organization is composed of dedicated young people with enthusiasm and experience in working with elderly individuals, low-income residents and others who may need a hand in hooking up their converter boxes or checking their antennas.”
(Editor: Baumann)


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