NTCA Calls Upon FCC to Address Call Failure Issues Comprehensively and in Short Order


For Immediate Release


Contact: Laura Withers, 703-351-2086, lwithers@ntca.org
             Wendy Mann, 703-351-2087, wmann@ntca.org

Background: NTCA first raised concerns about calls failing to complete to rural areas in January 2011. Nearly two years later, while the FCC has taken steps to examine the problem, the epidemic continues unabated, and reports indicate that call failures have only increased in recent weeks.

Arlington, Va. (December 13, 2012) – The National Telecommunications Cooperative Association (NTCA) today issued the following statement from Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield:

“As the holidays approach, this is a natural time for loved ones to call relatives in distant areas to share in the spirit of the season. Unfortunately, we are hearing reports in recent weeks of an alarming increase of calls that are failing to complete to rural consumers. This, of course, not only denies loved ones the ability to reach one another during the holidays, but it also frustrates commerce during a busy season and creates the serious risk of injury or even death as calls fail to reach their intended destinations. Rural telcos and the consumers they serve are tired of being “left on hold” as this problem is examined for years on end. In a letter sent today to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, NTCA therefore implores the FCC to take swift and conclusive action in the coming weeks to complete its multiyear investigation, to punish those failing to route and complete calls, and to put this epidemic to rest once and for all.”

 

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The National Telecommunications Cooperative Association is the premier association representing more than 580 locally owned and controlled telecommunications cooperatives and commercial companies throughout rural and small-town America. NTCA provides its members with legislative, regulatory and industry representation; meetings; publications and educational programs; and an array of employee benefit programs. Visit us at www.ntca.org.