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Broadband: Low Incomes

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN 50011, tabled on 15 September 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has had with Ofcom on progress towards securing cheaper broadband tariffs for low income households.

Answered on

24 September 2021

In the past 6 months, DCMS - working with Ofcom - have convened two Ministerial roundtables with senior representatives of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to discuss affordability and encourage the introduction of fixed broadband social tariffs for low-income households.

Following our engagement with the sector, a range of broadband social tariff packages are now available in the market to support those on low incomes or who receive specific benefits. BT, for example, recently announced a Home Essentials package to launch which will provide fibre and voice services to households in receipt of Universal Credit and certain other means-tested benefits for £15 per month. Virgin, Hyperoptic and other providers are also offering similar packages to assist on low incomes. Between them, these products are available to 99% of households across the country.

The government, together with Ofcom, continues to encourage all fixed-line providers to introduce a social tariff offer so as to ensure those on low incomes have affordable access to services and information.

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