Updating our review of Alberta’s connectivity crisis

In April, Cybera’s policy team created a white paper to highlight and address the internet crisis in Alberta. As COVID-19 continues to impact schools and businesses in the province, this problem of access and connectivity has not gone away.

In the original white paper, we provided suggestions for how the provincial government and large ISPs can work together to address this problem. We also invited input from the public.

The most common feedback we received was the need to include suggestions for the federal government, as that is where the most impactful changes must come from.

With that in mind, we have created an updated version of the white paper, including a recommendations section for the Government of Canada.

Federal Recommendations

The new recommendations include moving up the existing funding commitments of the Universal Broadband Fund. (And in fact, Rural Economic Development Minister Maryam Monsef said yesterday the government will be opening this $1.7 billion fund to applications “in the coming days”.)

We also suggested the CRTC revise its target for universal connectivity to better reflect the increased importance of broadband. In addition, we noted the need for regulatory efficiencies in wholesale wireless and spectrum allocation policies.

We invite our community to take a look at the revised white paper, which we will treat as a living document. Are there other tangible actions that we’re missing? Let us know!