MEDIA ADVISORY Contact: Josh Hart, Spokesperson
AB2395: California Legislation Would Allow Destruction of the Landline Network
Protest Planned at AT&T Wireless Store in San Francisco Monday Lunchtime
The Save Landline Telephones Coalition will hold a demonstration in front of the AT&T store at 425 Market St. in San Francisco on Monday May 23rd at 11:30am to oppose California legislation AB 2395 and attempts by AT&T and other telecom corporations to destroy our reliable landline network.
AB 2395 is a bill currently before the California State Legislature that would permit AT&T to dismantle copper analog landlines, starting Jan. 1st, 2020 (in 3 1/2 years). Millions of people depend on landlines as the only safe and reliable means to call for help during power outages and emergencies, to access services, conduct business, and to reach their loved ones. The destruction of our landline network would disproportionately affect the poor, seniors, rural residents, those in prison, and others with few or no alternatives.
AB 2395 is purely about boosting AT&T’s profits while reducing consumer choices, harming rural areas of the state, and giving regulated corporations a free pass to destroy valuable public infrastructure while only offering vague references to alleged benefits. The bill would trigger the loss of thousands of solid union jobs, while reducing communication choices, and cut off people who depend solely on wired systems- particularly those with electrical sensitivities.
According to Josh Hart, Spokesperson for the Coalition:
“Analog landlines remain the highest quality voice option hands down. It is not “progress” to rip out the highest quality network, and replace it with inferior options prone to static, interference, and dropped calls.”
AT&T and their shareholders would like nothing better than to escape their historical mandate to provide safe, reliable, affordable telecommunications to Californians. However, the potential economic damage resulting from the severing of this key, high quality, communications infrastructure is significant.
Further privatizing and deregulating essential public services will leave us not with advanced technologies but with systems that are less safe, less reliable, and less affordable. If AT&T succeeds in pushing this damaging bill through, it is the public who will lose while AT&T reaps ever greater profits.
AB2395 will be heard by the State Assembly Appropriations Committee at 9 a.m. next Wednesday May 25th – Capitol Rm. 4202. (check SaveLandlines.org for updates)
Protest AT&T’s Threat to Destroy our Safe and Reliable Landline Telephones
11:30am Monday May 23rd
AT&T Wireless Store, 425 Market St. (at Fremont St.)
Nearest BART: Embarcadero
Visuals: Demonstrators with signs, handing out flyers, landline handsets, and busy signal/ disconnected audio clips
A Summary of Landline Issues: