CRTC Chairman Meeting with i-CANADA, CATA Delegation: Advocacy for a more connected Canada
January 17, 2013

On January 17, 2013, i-CANADA delegates met with Jean-Pierre Blais, the new Chair of the CRTC, to support his position on the importance of a more connected Canada.  Blais brings a strong legal background and a comprehensive understanding of the broadcasting and telecommunications sectors to his role at the CRTC. His goals are to:

·         Sharpen the Commission’s focus on the public interest—putting Canadians at the centre of their communication system

·         Give Canadians access to compelling and diverse, creative content

·         Ensure that Canadians can connect to innovative communications services at reasonable prices

·         Give healthy competition among multiple service providers 

The i-CANADA delegation spoke to the goal of the creation of an Intelligent Nation, community by community, using the best ultra-high-speed networks to provide digital inclusion, virtual access to education, globally-connected healthcare, investment attraction, and sustainable ideas-based employment. Broadband is considered an essential service that each Canadian has access to as a human right. Unlike other utilities, only broadband can be used to deliver healthcare, education, commerce, and demand management and conservation of water and electricity, around the clock. 

To do this, i-CANADA is advocating the creation of a national coalition to enable the availability of a nationwide, ultra-broadband network that provides at least 1-gig/second to the vast majority of Canadians by 2020. 

The i-CANADA delegation consisted of  John Reid, President, CATA; Barry Gander, EVP CATA and Co-Founder, i-CANADA; Bill Hutchison, Chair, i-CANADA; John Campbell, President and CEO, Waterfront Toronto; Mark Romoff, President and CEO, Canadian Council on Public Private Partnerships; and Campbell Patterson, Broadband Community Organizer.  The spokespeople exchanged views with Mr. Blais about a consumer-centric, open network, from a 360-degree circle of interests, including novel financing methods, community networking, ultra-fast broadband, and large-scale urban development. 

“It is clear that Canada’s global slide demands a new approach: consumer-centric access to diverse creative content over competitive networks,” said Mr, Hutchison.   “We agree with Chairman Blais, and we had  this meeting to reinforce his position.” 

To find out the results of this meeting or to speak with a representative from i-CANADA, please contact Michelle Lee Hoy (mleehoy@national.ca) or Maricel Dicion (mdicion@national.ca).

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