Parliament – National Broadband Network

Thursday, 29 November 2018

1,799: that is the number of residents who have been in touch with me about problems with the NBN since the Liberals were elected in 2013. This number includes people who have waited unacceptable periods of time to be connected. In particular, there are those residents who are still waiting to be connected due to the government’s bundling of the HFC rollout. In my electorate, there are 4,500 homes that have been impacted by the delay. Most of those homes will now be waiting until 2020 to be connected. David from Sheidow Park has been impacted. He said:

The ongoing delay of the rollout of the NBN to Sheidow Park is extremely frustrating.

The NBN currently finishes at my back fence. My mobile has a faster connection than my house!

Out of those 1,799 people, there are those who are connected to the Liberals’ copper based NBN, only to receive slow and unreliable broadband—often slower than they previously had with their ADSL connection. There are people like Peter from Aberfoyle Park, who was connected to the fibre-to-the-node NBN and since has been incredibly unhappy with the speeds. He’s also unhappy because his connection drops out when it rains. Peter was going to set up a business at his home but, because of the poor and unreliable internet connection, he’s setting up a business in a suburb kilometres away. Poor NBN is actually driving business out of our community.

Of course, then there are the people who contacted me because they’ve been unhappy with the service provided by NBN Co. I could provide many examples of poor service in my local community, but I’ll just stick with one today. A resident from O’Halloran Hill contacted me after an NBN Co technician turned up to his property unannounced, apparently to fix a fault in the line. Long story short, the technician ended up severing the internet cable for both his and his neighbour’s properties. When there is an NBN fault, often there will be a blame game going on between NBN Co and the service provider. This gentleman and his neighbour had to go back and forth and back and forth with NBN Co to get them to fix it. Eventually, three weeks later, it was fixed. People do not want a blame game; they just want decent service. They want a fast internet connection. This is what they were promised, but they are not getting it.

The problems that are happening with NBN Co are unacceptable. It is time that this government took seriously fixing the internet problems that many residents continue to have and took seriously the importance of the internet, because residents in my electorate do.

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