Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on December 9, 2011 at 11:05 am
By Len Cali, AT&T Senior Vice President of Global Public Policy
Did you know that one quarter of the U.S. population consists of people who are elderly, have a disability, or both? And 30% of households in this country have a family member with a disability. With our aging population, roughly 10,000 people turn 65 every day. And this trend is expected to continue for the next two decades. Think about that. This is a significant number of Americans whose appetite for mobile broadband technologies is just as voracious as the rest of the population.
This week, I had the privilege of delivering a keynote address at the M-Enabling Summit held here in Washington D.C. This was the first industry event dedicated exclusively to exploring accessible and assistive mobile platforms to better serve seniors and persons with disabilities.
Our philosophy at AT&T has always been to design products and services that benefit as many people as possible. And our Universal Design policy provides our suppliers and internal stakeholders with a clear set of guidelines that enable us to bring accessible products and services to the marketplace.
Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on November 1, 2011 at 10:27 am
As National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) comes to a close, we had the pleasure to attend the FCC Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility event last Friday in Washington. Awards were presented for developments in mainstream or assistive technologies, standards and best practices.
Due to the hard work by our AT&T Labs colleagues (we mean you, Jay Wilpon, Amanda Stent, Thomas Okken and Giuseppe Di Fabbrizio!) in the area of speech recognition and text-to-speech technologies, we were honored to receive the Chairman’s Lifted by the Cloud award for the AT&T Speech Mashup. And we were further humbled and proud to receive an honorable mention for the Chairman’s Award for Advancement in Accessibility.
It was also an honor to be among such an inspiring group of award recipients, which were selected by staff of the FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative (A&I Initiative). We have been thoroughly impressed and encouraged by the other accessible technologies and services that have been highlighted throughout the nomination process.
Posted by: Joan Marsh on July 19, 2011 at 9:42 am
In a blog posting last week, Public Knowledge attempted to mount an attack on AT&T on two fronts: jobs and diversity. Faced with the unpleasant reality that those whose very mission is to promote and protect those agendas – labor unions and civil rights organizations – have enthusiastically endorsed the AT&T/T-Mobile USA merger, PK patronizingly dismisses their advocacy as misinformed, going so far as to accuse them of “blindly follow[ing] AT&T off of a cliff.” But ironically, even as PK arrogantly discredits those who support the merger, its analysis is cluttered with misinformation and irrelevancies.
For example, PK, using testimony from a state hearing, asserts that, since 2004, AT&T reduced its workforce by 40% in California while its access line loss was under 9% nationally. Had PK bothered to check the facts it would have learned that AT&T lost over 11% of its total switched access lines last year alone, with an 11.2% access line loss in 2009 as well. Indeed, over the past 9 years, AT&T has lost a full half of its access lines. Yet from 2006 to 2010, AT&T employee headcount decreased by only approximately 12%. So, far from cutting jobs at a rate that exceeds its access line losses, AT&T has lost access lines at a rate that far exceeds its headcount decreases.
PK also conveniently ignores the significant investment that will be necessary to expand our LTE network to reach over 97% of all Americans. That investment will create jobs, and will have job-creating ripple effects throughout the economy, particularly in rural areas. Recognizing these important ripple effects, the CWA commissioned a study that found that the transaction will create as many as 96,000 new, quality jobs, while accelerating broadband build out and improving wireless communications.