In December 2016 the CRTC, which is Canada’s telecom regulator, declared broadband internet access is now considered a basic service in Canada. Former CRTC Chairman Jean-Pierre Blais, stated at the time, “Access to broadband internet service is vital and a basic telecommunication service all Canadians are entitled to receive.”
While tens of millions of Canadians have internet access in the home, the CRTC noted the goal was to bring 50 Mbps download and 10 Mbps for uploads. From a wireless perspective, there are now well over 30 million wireless subscribers in Canada and many have dropped the landline telephone service from their monthly bill.
An ‘essential service’ is described by the Public Service Labour Relations Act as: “a service, facility or activity of the Government of Canada that is or will be, at any time, necessary for the safety or security of the public or a segment of the public.”
In our weekly poll, similar to water, electricity, and national security, do you think it’s time for the Canadian government and our wireless carriers to recognize the mobile phone as an essential service?