Township of the Archipelago Councilor and Crane Lake resident Ian Mead has passed on the chance to participate in a CRTC Consultation about broadband internet access in cottage country.
Full details and messaging below from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, but click here to skip to the questionnaire.
Call to action: Participate in the CRTC’s consultation, “Let’s Talk Broadband Internet!”
FCM is participating in a landmark federal consultation on the future of broadband Internet access in Canada – an issue that has been a longstanding priority for the Rural Forum and the Northern and Remote Forum. As part of the consultation, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is now inviting Canadians to share their views on the telecommunications services they need to participate in the digital economy.
The CRTC has released a short questionnaire for Canadians to complete and to share their views on the telecommunications services available in their region. Considering the importance of this consultation, we encourage members to complete the questionnaire to highlight their communities’ challenges in accessing affordable and reliable broadband service. Canadians who cannot access the questionnaire online may call 1-877-249-2782 to fill it out over the phone with an agent or to request a paper copy. The responses to the questionnaire (online, phone, fax or mail) must be completed and received by the CRTC by February 29, 2016.
We also encourage you to submit an intervention to the CRTC by February 8, 2016. You can submit comments by:
- filling out the online form;
- writing to the Secretary General, CRTC, Ottawa, Ontario K1A ON2; or
- sending a fax to (819) 994-0218.
Should you decide to make a submission and/or participate in the questionnaire, please refer to the prepared key messages below.
The consultation is part of a comprehensive review of the CRTC’s policies for basic telecommunications services, launched in April 2015. The review is examining what services Canadians require to participate meaningfully in the digital economy and what prices Canadians should pay for these services. In particular, the CRTC will assess whether to expand its basic service objective by requiring service providers to ensure universal access to affordable, high-quality broadband Internet services.
FCM’s July 2015 submission calls for universal access to affordable and reliable high-speed Internet and highlights the significant barriers faced by communities in both rural and northern Canada. In particular, FCM recommended that the CRTC expand its basic service objective to guarantee long-term, reliable broadband connectivity across Canada and to continually evaluate its broadband speed targets to reflect technological advancements and evolving user needs. FCM is ready to continue this discussion with the CRTC through the next phase of the consultation, including a public hearing scheduled for April 2016.
What telecommunications services do Canadians consider necessary to participate in the digital economy?
- One of the greatest barriers to participation in the digital economy is lack of broadband access and poor uploading and downloading speeds. Broadband Internet access has become fundamental to modern life, and has the power to transform rural and northern Canada. Networks contribute to economic growth by improving productivity, providing new services, supporting innovation, and improving market access. Ensuring universal access to high-speed Internet will support economic development and attract and retain young talent in Canada’s rural, remote and northern communities.
Should the prices for telecommunications services in Canada be similar between urban and non-urban areas?
- The federal government must ensure universal access to affordable high-speed at speeds and prices comparable to Canada’s peers in the United States, Europe and elsewhere.
What upload and download speeds for broadband Internet service would meet Canadians’ needs?
- The Commission’s current target speeds for broadband – a minimum of 5 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload – are no longer sufficient to meet the minimum needs of Canadians, and compare poorly to targets established internationally. We recommend that the CRTC continually re-evaluate its broadband speed targets to reflect technological advancements, changes in user needs, traffic, and network capacity.