Independent Member for Indi Helen Haines is encouraging individuals and community groups to take part in a Federal Government review examining the existing and future telecommunication needs of regional communities.

The Regional Telecommunications Review is held every three years to investigate equitable access to telecommunications services across regional, rural and remote Australia.

“This Review is an opportunity for people across Indi to tell the federal government directly about the challenges they face because of poor phone and internet services,” Dr Haines said.

“Since becoming the Independent Member for Indi, I have worked tirelessly with local communities, councils and other organisations to improve phone and internet connectivity in key affected areas.”

Dr Haines helped to secure a public consultation for the Review in the electorate of Indi at the Benalla Town Hall on May 3.

“Regional communities are held back by unreliable NBN coverage, mobile phone blackspots and slow internet speeds during peak holiday periods,” Dr Haines said.

“We should not have to settle for second-rate telecommunications. Reliable internet and mobile phone coverage are not ‘nice to haves’ – our modern society relies on them to run businesses, work from home, study and access crucial healthcare services.

“In addition to these frustrations and barriers to prosperity, poor telecommunications create significant challenges for our emergency services who need dependable channels of communication during bushfires and other natural disasters.

“The federal government has a responsibility to ensure regional communities have access to stable, affordable, high-speed telecommunications.”

Dr Haines has fought for improved telecommunications in Federal Parliament by introducing her Faster Internet for Regional Australia Bill in 2022 which sought to guarantee access for regional Australians to fast, high-quality internet of the same standard enjoyed by people in the major cities.

Anyone impacted by poor phone and internet connectivity is encouraged to attend the Regional Telecommunications Review public consultation on Friday 3 May 2024 at the Benalla Town Hall from 10:00am – 11:30am

Tickets for the public consultation can be reserved here.


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