Skip navigation

Speech on the need for NBN upgrades across the Ryan electorate

On Tuesday 19 March 2024, I made a speech in Federal Parliament about Speech on the need for NBN upgrades across the Ryan electorate. You can watch the full speech here or read the transcript below.


Many Ryan residents have raised concerns about the lack of mobile coverage in the area. It is utterly unacceptable that in 2024 we are still grappling with the fallout of botched mobile coverage and NBN upgrades. In lovely areas like Moggill, Bellbowrie, Brookfield and The Gap, near the bustling heart of Brisbane, many are stranded in a digital desert, unable to make a simple phone call or easily access the internet. Clearly, the current system is just not working for people because of the stranglehold that privatised Telstra holds over our telecommunications infrastructure, coupled with the for-profit and underfunded NBN's delays in high-speed broadband rollout across the country. The privatisation and the corporatisation of our essential services and infrastructure means Australia continues to place last in the OECD rankings for entry-level fixed broadband availability while other countries surge ahead with cutting-edge technologies.

There is hope. Through persistent advocacy from my wonderful team, working with locals, we have had some wins. Kenmore Hills, Bellbowrie and The Gap were eventually included in the NBN upgrade rollout, with Kenmore Hills prioritised and full fibre-to-the-premises installations currently ongoing. This was despite these residents initially being told they would have to foot the bill themselves. What a disgrace—huge out-of-pocket costs for essential infrastructure that should have been provided by the government. Now we'll fight the same uphill battle with residents of The Gap and Fig Tree Pocket too.

These are urban areas. It shouldn't be this hard to get a decent internet connection or mobile coverage. It's an absolute disgrace, but perhaps most infuriating of all is the knowledge that this crisis was entirely avoidable. The short-sighted decision to privatise Telstra in the nineties effectively sold off our future, consigning us to a fate where corporate greed reigns supreme. Telstra, Optus and NBN Co—they're all cut from the same cloth: prioritising profits over people, leaving us at their mercy. We need to put our key infrastructure back in the hands of the public so that it works for the people and not for profit.

Continue Reading

Read More