Staying Connected: AT&T partners with Consumer Action to promote wireless education to Community Based Organizations


Last month a number of Community Based Organizations (CBO’s) in the Washington, DC area participated in a roundtable: Wireless ED: Wireless Education and Empowerment.  The roundtable was hosted by Consumer Action who partnered with AT&T and its focus was to discuss the importance of wireless education within businesses.

CBO’s like Opportunities Industrialization Center-DC, Housing Initiative Partnership and Ida Mae Campbell Foundation were among the attendees.  The roundtable focused on promoting wireless literacy within companies.

Executive Director of Consumer Action, Ken McEldowney, said, “ cell phones are so complicated today and roundtables like this offer CBO’s different options and alternatives to the way they communicate through wireless.” He said many companies don’t have the right plan and this roundtable takes CBO’s step-by-step through the process of understanding their plans and

Most companies today use some form of wireless communication to do business, but they may not be using the most efficient service to maximize their dollars.  Community Outreach and Training Manager for Consumer Action Linda Williams, said this information is particularly critical for the African American population because small business owners need to be aware of the many options they have for their businesses.  “if your company is not wireless literate then it is a high target for high overages which lead to high wireless bills.”

The roundtable walked through the steps of understanding the various wireless plans, data usage, the various functions of a wireless plan, and properly reading a wireless bill.

The roundtable also discussed the importance of parents understanding their bills so that their children do not abuse their wireless usage.  Presenters spoke about 3rd party controls that can allow parents to monitor their child’s usage and even monitor if they travel outside a certain radius.

AT&T Public Affairs Director, Andrea Brands said its important for AT&T to partner with projects like this because the public affairs division is focused on promoting wireless education along with online safety and cyber security.

Mr. McEldowney said he hopes CBO’s walk away with more options and that these options influence them to change their behavior as it relates to wireless usage.

Consumer Action not only focuses on wireless literacy but also financial literacy.  The company holds roundtables across the country and offers company’s materials in 5 different languages.  For more information visit



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