DENVER, April 28, 2005 ? Qwest today announced an expanded outreach effort aimed at promoting low-cost telephone service to individuals living on the more than 60 tribal lands across its 14-state region. The effort, combined with new federal guidelines making more residents eligible for Qwest?s Tribal Lifeline and Tribal Link-Up telephone assistance programs, means even more now qualify for low-cost telecommunications installation and service.
?Qwest is proud of its role in connecting families with technology and telecommunications services on tribal lands,? said Paula Kruger, Qwest executive vice president, consumer markets. ?Partnering with tribal leaders, we will work to increase awareness of these programs, and encourage more to sign up for them.?
Under recently expanded Federal Poverty Guidelines, customers whose household income is at or below 135 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines now qualify for assistance. Household income was not part of the eligibility requirements before.
Qwest will expand its outreach, working with leaders in tribal communities throughout its 14-state region to publicize the availability of these programs. That outreach includes public service announcements and on-the-ground marketing on reservations and at Native American ?pow wows,? which draw thousands of participants. Qwest?s outreach efforts are designed to encourage eligible participants to sign up.
Qwest began offering Tribal Lifeline and Tribal Link-Up in June 2000, when the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) established the programs in an effort to promote telephone service in underserved tribal areas. Tribal Lifeline, provides residential customers who live on tribal lands with basic local telephone service for as low as $1.00 per month, plus applicable taxes and surcharges. Tribal Link-Up, reduces the cost of installing a customer?s main telephone line by 50 percent.
Individuals living on tribal lands qualify for the Tribal Lifeline and Tribal Link-Up if they participate in one of the following low-income programs.
2. Food Stamps
3. Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
4. Head Start (Meeting Income Requirement)
5. Tribally Administered Temporary Housing for the Needy Families
6. Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance Programs
7. Federal Public Housing Assistance
8. Low-income Home Energy Assistance
9. National School Lunch Program
10. Any other qualifying program approved by the state Lifeline and Link-Up program
As of this week, individuals can also qualify for Tribal Lifeline if their household income is at or below 135 percent of the Federal Poverty guidelines.
Enrollment is easy. Qualified individuals need to complete and return a simple application that can be obtained by calling Qwest at 1 800-244-1111. The application can also be found at the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com/TAP.
Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q) is a leading provider of voice, video and data services. With more than 40,000 employees, Qwest is committed to the ?Spirit of Service? and providing world-class services that exceed customers? expectations for quality, value and reliability. For more information, please visit the Qwest Web site at www.qwest.com.
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