Interventions Phase 2: Intervenor 674

Document Name: 2015-134.227121.2529594.Interventions Phase 2(1$7%$01!).html

My name is **** Bee. I was born and raised on a farm in Southwestern Manitoba and I am acutely aware of the discrepancies in internet access across Canada. As the farm is located in a sparsely populated region of the country, reliable broadband service is just not accessible for many who live in this rural area. And while satellite broadband internet is available in the region, it is not the most stable form of internet access as it is greatly affected by the weather. As well, if few companies are available to provide this access then it gives then a monopoly on the service that allows them to price gouge customers who have no other options available to them. This places several groups of people at a disadvantage compared to people who live in urban areas. For instance, children are greatly limited in the amount of educational materials available to them from the internet since data packages are too expensive to allow steady access to content online. Farmers also have a definite disadvantage not having ready access to stable broadband as well, considering the federal government scrapped the Canadian Wheat Board and has forced all farmers to market their own grain. Given the volatility of those markets farmers need to have quick and consistent access to the internet in order to get current market prices in order to sell their grain. Denying them this forces them into an economic dilemma. And senior citizens, who are now expected to perform tasks online that they used to be able to do in person, need to have consistent internet access in order for them to receive benefits and send inquiries to various government agencies. It is my believe that the CRTC should make broadband service a basic service for all Canadians, and should at least ease the broadband caps small internet providers are forced to charge to allow them to be more competitive in these areas.