Safe Connections Act of 2022
This bill establishes requirements concerning access to communication services for survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, and related harms.
At a survivor's request, a mobile service provider must separate from a shared mobile service contract the survivor's line (and the line of any individual in the survivor's care) from the abuser's line unless separation is operationally or technologically infeasible. A survivor requesting this must (1) verify through appropriate documentation that an individual under the contract committed or allegedly committed an act of domestic violence, trafficking, or a related criminal act against the survivor; and (2) assume financial responsibility for services after a line separation.
A provider may not charge fees or impose other requirements on such requests. Additionally, a provider must
- separate the line within two business days of receiving a request;
- allow requests to be made remotely (if feasible);
- meet conditions related to confidentiality of, disposal of, and other matters concerning communications about requests; and
- make information about the process for requests available through consumer-facing communications (e.g., websites).
The bill (1) provides liability protection for providers' acts or omissions undertaken to comply with such requests, and (2) requires the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to adopt rules for these requests.
Additionally, the FCC must (1) expand access to federally subsidized communication services for survivors facing financial hardship, and (2) evaluate this expanded access.
The FCC must also consider rules requiring communication service providers to omit from consumer-facing logs calls and texts to hotlines for domestic violence and similar issues while retaining internal records.