In the News
ACORN Members Disappointed - Federal Budget - Low Income Internet Support for Corporate Innovation & Nothing for Actual Low Income People!
OTTAWA – ACORN members are disappointed that the 2017 Federal Budget, with $13.2 million over 5 years to “support low-income Canadians’ access to broadband,” is actually just a corporate subsidy and will result in no new money in the pockets of low income Canadians.
The historic CRTC announcement today was focused in the right direction by declaring broadband a basic service and by recognizing that affordability is a problem. However, the announcement did not include anything about the desperately needed subsidy for urban low income people that ACORN members were hoping to hear.
Following 3 years of advocating in favour of a $10 a month Internet plan that would close Canada's digital divide, ACORN members are pleased by Telus' "Internet For Good announced this morning. ACORN has held many demonstrations, released several reports, and participated in the most recent CRTC hearings on Telecom regulations, all in the name of leveling the playing field for low income earners who struggle to afford what is considered to be a necessity in today's world.
Nearly half of Canadian households who earn less than $30,000 per year do not have Internet access in their homes. This makes it difficult to find employment, connect with family members in other locations, for children to achieve their best at school and for low income folks to access government services.
ACORN Canada's tireless efforts to keep the high cost of internet in the public eye led members being invited to the CRTC's public hearing on internet access and affordability. On April 14, 10 ACORN members told personal stories about how not having access to home internet has impeded their - and their childrens' - success in the digital economy.
In a forceful and unusual statement delivered in the middle of a public hearing, the chairman of Canada’s telecom regulator called on governments as well as the telecom industry itself to contribute to the development of a “coherent national broadband strategy.”