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Union Says AT&T Outage Shows Importance of COLR Rules

AT&T’s nationwide wireless outage last week shows why California regulators shouldn’t relieve the company of carrier of last resort (COLR) obligations, Communications Workers of America said. COLR requires AT&T to make landlines available to anyone who requests them across the…

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state. The hourslong wireless outage (see 2402220058) showed that landlines remain important, CWA District 9 Vice President Frank Arce said Thursday. As such, the California Public Utilities Commission should reject “AT&T’s attempt to cut service to our most vulnerable residents,” he said. An AT&T spokesperson responded Friday, “We are not canceling landline service in California, and none of our California customers will lose access to voice service or 911 service.” The carrier said it's focused on upgrading customers to fiber and wireless technologies that consumers increasingly demand. “No customer will be disconnected, and we’re working with the remaining consumers who use traditional landline service to upgrade to newer technologies.” AT&T is pushing for quick CPUC action on its COLR relief petition (see 2402210038). The carrier disclosed in a Thursday ex parte notice that it plans to meet virtually Tuesday with aides to Commissioner Karen Douglas.