Gov. Whitmer, MPSC mark Lifeline Awareness Week to promote discounts for telephone, broadband services

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   September 9, 2019

Media Contact: Matt Helms 517-284-8300
Customer Assistance: 800-292-9555

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Public Service Commission are teaming up to highlight the Lifeline telephone and broadband discount program as part of Lifeline Awareness Week.

The week promotes a program that provides discounted voice or broadband service to veterans, seniors and low-income Michiganders. Gov. Whitmer has issued a proclamation officially designating Sept. 9-13 as Lifeline Awareness Week in Michigan, noting that voice or broadband can be out of reach for many residents of limited means.

“Reliable and affordable communication by phone or online are critical to quality of life,” Gov Whitmer said. “Residents of all economic backgrounds should be able to afford phone and broadband services that provide access to jobs, education, health services, community resources and friends and family.”

Dozens of telecommunications carriers in Michigan offer Lifeline, a federal-state program. Through Lifeline, income-eligible people under age 65 get a minimum monthly discount on their bill of $8.25. Those 65 and older receive a discount of $12.35.

To qualify for the state program, a Michigan customer must have an income that is at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level or participate in one of these programs:

  • Medicaid.
  • Food Assistance.
  • Supplemental Security Income.
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
  • State Emergency Relief (SER) and Home Heating Credit (HHC) components of the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8).
  • The National School Lunch Program.

Veterans may qualify for the federal Lifeline program if they participate in the Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefits Program.

According to the Universal Service Administrative Co., there were on average 389,370 Lifeline subscribers in Michigan last year.

For more information about Lifeline, see the MPSC’s Federal Lifeline or Michigan Lifeline consumer tip sheets or contact the MPSC at 800-292-9555. Check this list of participating companies to see if your local landline telephone company, wireless provider, or broadband provider participates in the Lifeline program.

Read Gov. Whitmer’s Lifeline Awareness Week proclamation here.

For information about the MPSC, visit, sign up for one of its listservs, or follow the Commission on Twitter.

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