February 4, 2009
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Washington, DC – The National Consumers League (NCL) today has issued the following statement regarding the passage in the U.S. House of Representatives of S. 352, “The DTV Delay Act.” This statement is attributable to Sally Greenberg, Executive Director of the National Consumers League:
“The decision by the U.S. House of Representatives to approve a four-month delay in the shutdown of analog TV signals is a victory for the estimated 6.5 million U.S. households that remain unprepared for the DTV transition. Consumers in these unprepared households are disproportionately elderly, low-income, rural, and minority. The delay will allow time for governmental, private, and non-profit educational efforts to have greater effect and for more converter box coupons to be sent to consumers currently on the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s waiting list. The delay will also help avoid the nightmare scenario of consumers, particularly older ones, climbing their roofs in February to adjust TV antennas due to the transition. We urge President Obama to sign the bill to law as soon as possible.”
While this legislation moves the official transition deadline to June 12, it does not prohibit broadcasters from turning off their analog signals before that date. NCL calls on broadcasters to honor the new deadline extension and maintain their analog signals until then to allow more consumers to prepare for the transition.
About the National Consumers League
Founded in 1899, the National Consumers League is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Its mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. NCL is a private, nonprofit membership organization. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.