Friday, 01 May 2020 10:22

Rural broadband funding welcomed

Written by  Staff Reporters
Fiona Gower. Fiona Gower.

Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) says it is pleased to hear the Government’s announcement of new funding for improved rural broadband.

“Improving connectivity is vital to successful business, health and safety, education and social connection in rural communities,” says national president, Fiona Gower.

“RWNZ would like to see the Wireless Internet Service Providers (WISP’s) included in the Government’s new rural broadband funding – they have filled the gap left by the big telcos in getting internet into rural, remote and hard to reach areas of our country.

Gower says the rural women lobby also like to see a commitment to improving mobile phone coverage in rural New Zealand. She says because with only 50% coverage across New Zealand, it is the rural communities missing out.

“Covid-19 has highlighted the issue of digital inequity with incredibly slow rural internet speeds and landlines overloading. 

“Children now being schooled at home are often struggling to get to their online classes.  Women and children living with intimate partner violence are not able to contact support services and the additional health and social service support offered online is only available to those with adequate connectivity – it is our hope that this new funding from Government will alleviate these issues.”

Gower says across the board, self-isolation and restrictions on bubbles mean that it is vital that communities have the tools to connect to, at the very least, maintain mental wellness.

“We know that rural communities tend to be resilient and supportive and this new funding from the Government will, if allocated wisely, keep them that way.” 

More like this

National

Job losses worry meat sector

New Zealand's meat processing industry says, while it supports moves away from coal, it has some major concerns about cuts…

Manawatu's economy bouncing back

Although the national economy is still functioning below pre-pandemic levels and the road ahead remains uncertain, the Manawatu region appears…

Machinery & Products

Real handy in all situations

Listening to customers across all sectors of agriculture helps the Handypiece team design and engineer options to make its unit…

Film binding now available

The Kuhn VBP 3100 series variable chamber baler-wrapper combination can now be equipped with the patented Kuhn Twin-reel film binding…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Great idea

OPINION: Your old mate has long argued Landcorp’s farming business – Pamu – is a bigger dog than he is.

Unemployable?

OPINION: Your canine crusader shakes his head at the complete lack of practical and real-world knowledge in both government and…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter