NBN Co should act now for Woodcroft and Doonside residents

Federal Chifley MP Ed Husic has today slammed NBN Co for neglecting the needs of Woodcroft and Doonside residents in its recently released 12 month rollout plan.

“Woodcroft and Doonside resident have a chronic lack of access to broadband – I’ve raised that in Federal Parliament several times now,” Mr Husic said.

"I also publicly reminded NBN Co's CEO Mike Quigley of this when he visited the new Bunya Estate in Doonside last month.

"Network access is so congested and so bad in parts of Woodcroft, residents tell me they sometimes have to wait for someone to move out of the suburb before an existing resident can get ADSL access.

"On top of that, residents have told me time after time that wireless services are slow or unreliable.

"Businesses in Woodcroft Shopping Centre have told me about how their work is affected by a lack of quality internet access - and they're surprised that the internet access they take for granted elsewhere in Western Sydney can't be duplicated in Woodcroft.”

Mr Husic said last year, NBN Co announced a range of suburbs in the area would sit within the second NBN site – yet yesterday’s announcement referred only to areas outside the release site getting priority access.

"Only one suburb in the second release site is having work start on rolling out the NBN and new suburbs outside the release site are being pencilled for work – that’s just not on,” Mr Husic said.

"The release sites were supposed to provide a range of network scenarios to help NBN Co learn how to best rollout broadband networks across different landscapes.

"I would have thought Woodcroft would be an ideal suburb to test that out, given the network challenges confronting it.

"Instead, NBN Co is making a big deal out of rolling out broadband in new estates where people haven't even moved in, while down the road people are tearing their hair out to get ADSL or decent wireless access.

"I don't begrudge new areas getting access - I'm happy for them.

"But how do you explain NBN Co's priorities to residents in Woodcroft and Doonside, who are struggling to get decent internet access?

"It seems to me NBN Co is just reaching out for easy targets, hugging geographic areas within close proximity of exchanges.

As a local MP, I don’t think NBN Co is doing what it's supposed to do: to lift struggling businesses and residents out of the digital divide and give them access to vital infrastructure.

"Let me say this loud and clear: residents in our local neighbourhoods deserve better.

"Residents in the neighbourhoods I'm proud to represent deserve better - and I'll be raising this matter formally with the Minister for Communications to understand why the pleas of Woodcroft and Doonside residents have been ignored by NBN Co."
Attached below are links to speeches or public comment Ed Husic has made in relation to Woodcroft and Doonside's broadband access issues: 
http://www.edhusic.com/2010/11/15/speech-national-broadband-network-financial-transparency-bill-2010-second-reading-main-committee/

http://www.edhusic.com/2011/02/28/national-broadband-network-companies-bill-2010/

http://www.zdnet.com.au/the-nbns-upside-in-doonside-339321938.htm

http://www.edhusic.com/2011/09/15/committees-infrastructure-and-communications-committee-report/

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Ed Husic MP
Federal Labor Member for Chifley


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