The following is a letter sent yesterday by WIA President and CEO Jonathan Adelstein to the members of WIA. Unedited and reprinted by permission.
Dear WIA Member —
I hope this message finds your company and your loved ones safe and healthy during these extraordinary times. We find ourselves not only in the middle of a pandemic, but also facing hurricanes and wildfires, with an imminent threat from Hurricane Laura.
I write to you today to support and share resources for the life-saving work you are doing by providing uninterrupted broadband service, building America’s wireless networks, and keeping your company and your customers safe. Your companies are the reason that literal lifelines stay open during natural disasters, and we at WIA could not be prouder to represent your needs to policymakers so that you receive the resources you need.
WIA is always advocating at the federal, state, and local levels for the best outcomes for your business. Even throughout the pandemic, we remain in close contact with the White House, government agencies, and members of Congress so we don’t miss an opportunity for molding impactful policy and removing regulatory barriers. As a result of Hurricane Sandy in 2018, Congress passed the SANDy Act, which provides tower owners and authorized technicians access to communications infrastructure during emergencies, making available the means necessary to ensure that our nation’s networks remain up and running at their best during critical times. Please find more information on the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Critical Infrastructure Security Agency website.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai appointed me as Vice Chairman of the Disaster Relief and Recovery Working Group, and I would like to take your suggestions and experience to that group so others can learn from them and so that we can continue to address your needs. Please share any suggestions you have. We are ready to assist you any way we can and support your efforts to be proactive. Please visit these resources as you plan for emergency preparedness and protocol:
- Federal Communications Commission’s Hurricane Response
- Department of Homeland Security’s Critical Infrastructure Security Agency
- DHS Priority Telecommunications Services Help Calls Go Through During Hurricane Season
- State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) – by state
- FCC Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee’s Disaster Response and Recovery Working Group’s Report and Recommendations
I sincerely thank you for your commitment to our nation’s vital connectivity needs with underscored importance during emergency situations such as those our country now faces. If there is anything we can do to help, please do not hesitate to reach out to me or to the WIA staff. You and your dedicated employees have my full support during these difficult times.
WIA President and CEO
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