If you want to help push for change, here is a template to write your MP about the importance of affordable internet.
Feel free to use some or all of it, as you see fit. The bolded information in square brackets is for you to add information about your personal information and opinion. Just select the text, copy and paste it into your email or a word document, make your additions and send!
You can find your MP’s name and contact information by entering your postal code in this website: https://www.ourcommons.ca/members/en
[M.P. name] M.P.
House of Commons
Dear [M.P.’s name],
I’m writing today as one of your constituents to ask you to help make home internet more affordable.
The internet has become even more central to daily life during the pandemic and associated lockdowns. I use my connection to [work from home, send my kids to school, look for work, keep in touch with friends or family, access government services, or add something else here].
Canada pays some of the highest prices for home internet in the world and it comes at a great cost. One survey by ACORN Canada found that before the pandemic, a quarter of those living on low incomes had to scrimp on their food budgets to pay for internet.
COVID-19 has only sharpened the need for everyone to be able to access affordable, high quality internet of sufficient speed.
[Feel free to add examples from your own life about how the high cost of internet affects you or those you know.]
As a member of National Capital FreeNet (NCF), a not-for-profit Internet Service Provider committed to digital equity, I am choosing to support a local social enterprise that does what it can to ensure everyone in the community has access to affordable internet. But the structure and rates of the wholesale internet market has made this difficult.
In 2019, after years of studying the issue, the CRTC recognized the inflated rates independent ISPs like NCF had been paying the incumbents like Bell and Rogers and dropped wholesale rates. This decision was upheld by the Federal Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. And yet NCF is still paying those old inflated rates and can’t pass along those savings to us, its members.
The CRTC needs to follow through on applying the lower rates they first proposed more than 18 months ago. And the government needs to take steps to ensure that all Canadians have access to fast, reliable and affordable internet.
I look forward to hearing from you about this urgent matter.
[your email address]