Sending Office: Eshoo, Anna G.
I’m inviting you to cosponsor the Help Americans Never Get Unwanted Phone-calls (HANGUP) Act of 2019, to restore protections for consumers and reduce a significant percentage of unwanted robocalls.
Your constituents and mine are sick and tired of the robocalls they receive on a daily basis, sometimes multiple times, and they want Congress to do something about them.
Last year, Americans received 26.3 billion robocalls – up 46% from the previous year. Unsolicited calls are the top source of consumer complaints to the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission. These are stunning statistics – and
even more stunningly, one of the most dominant type of robocalls comes not from typical scammers, but in fact from federal debt collecting contractors. These types of calls are among the top categories of robocalls.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991 protected consumers from such calls unless they had consented to receiving them, until a provision in the Budget Act of 2015 eliminated that protection. As a result, these unwanted calls are now legal.
They lead to millions more robocalls made not just to the original consumer, but often are directed to their relatives, references, or even employers.
The HANGUP Act would restore the original protections from the TCPA, providing much-needed relief to consumers nationwide. Specifically, it rescinds that provision in the Budget Act of 2015 that exempted those federal debt collectors from the longstanding
TCPA rule prohibiting them from robocalling consumer mobile phones, without consent, in cases when the consumer has debt owed or guaranteed by the federal government (for example, non-consensual calls made to collect of student loans, mortgages, veterans loans,
or farming loans).
While there is currently no silver bullet to stop robocalls altogether, there are policies we can put in place to reduce them significantly. The HANGUP Act is a critical part of that goal and one that I think is easily achievable.
I urge you to join me in that effort by cosponsoring this bill. If you have any questions or would like to join as an original cosponsor, you can contact Asad Ramzanali with my office at
email@example.com or 202-226-4581.
Anna G. Eshoo
Member of Congress
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0