Canadians looking for a break on their sky high cellphone and internet bills were disappointed affordability did not play as big a role in this year’s federal election campaign.
Justin Trudeau secured a third election victory on September 20 after calling a snap electio, but was held to a minority government for the second time in two years.
In 2019 Justin Trudeau promised Canadians action to reduce cellphone and internet bills significantly. According to the latest quarter wireless pricing data, a majority of data plans across Canada saw price declines of between nine and 15 per cent, progress short of the 25 per cent drop Trudeau promised in the 2019 election campaign.
Amal Mohammed, a Humber College nursing student, said she wants to see more action from the re-elected Trudeau.
“I voted Liberal again, of course, but I need more, these cellphone bills need to make it to the top of our prime minister’s list of things to tackle now that he’s re-elected,” she said.
As a student, Mohammed says cellphones play a big role in her everyday life and it’s challenging not to have a plan that’s affordable and still fits her needs.
Canadians rely on wireless connectivity for work, school, connecting with friends, and for social media — and the reliance only increased during the pandemic.
Trudeau did not offer any new promises about cell phone affordability in the recent campaign. Instead, he stuck with his promises from 2019 to reduce cellphone bills by the same 25 per cent target
Trudeau also has some other promises made in 2019 regarding cellphone and internet costs that have yet to be met, including:
- Major network operators required to lease their available capacity to qualified competitors.
- Working with telecom companies to offer plans comparable to global prices, plus an unlimited family plan
- Encourage competition by expanding the entry of Canadian Mobile Virtual Network Operators in the market.
Following through on one or more of these promises could help consumers see a bigger difference in their bills.
Conservative leader Erin O’Toole offered similar plans to encourage competition for the big three competitors.
Listen to some clips from my interview with Amal here