High speed broadband urgently needed in rural communities - McLaughlin

Thu, 18/07/2019 - 10:13 -- Editor

SDLP Derry Councillor Sinead McLaughlin is seeking assurances that the rollout of high speed broadband will reach people, communities and businesses in the North West.

She said: “The digital deficit across the North doesn’t just mean people in rural towns can’t access Netflix. It means that rural businesses struggle to access online banking, make digital tax returns or offer the online presence that modern consumers expect as standard. It also means that students in many of our communities can’t access reliable internet speeds for study or job applications. In an age where online services are a necessity, not an added luxury, it isn’t acceptable.

“Communities in the North West cannot continue to suffer from this digital divide. It is degrading our economy and providing further incentive for young people to leave our shores. The Universal Service Obligation commitments simply have not been met in large portions of the North. 

“I will be seeking assurances that the new rollout of broadband services under Project Stratum will reach our communities and that no one will be left behind."