Keeping New England connected on nbn during COVD-19

23 Apr 2020

Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, says $150 million in new financial relief for local businesses and households to help them stay connected during COVID-19, will be of significant benefit for many in his electorate, particularly families with school-aged kids. 

“In the coming weeks, students won't be attending class as they used to,” Mr Joyce said. 

“Instead, like the grown-ups, kids will be working from home more as well, chewing through more data and likely lumping higher internet bills on mum and dad. 

“But parents, you don't have to do it alone and if you are doing it tough, contact your internet service provider to find out how the NBN's COVID-19 assistance fund can help you.”

For households not yet connected to the NBN, $50 million in funding will be allocated to help connect low-income families with school-aged children so they can access the internet for educational purposes. NBN will waive the $37 monthly wholesale charge, paid for by internet providers, for many services on the 25/5 Mbps speed tier plan available from April until September. 

A further $50 million will be allocated to support households experiencing financial hardship due to the challenges presented by the coronavirus. Financial relief will be provided by NBN to internet providers so that they can maintain connections for households that are unable to pay some or all of their bills.

NBN will also make $50 million available to support small and medium businesses. Relief measures will include waiving wholesale monthly costs paid by internet providers for businesses facing COVID-19 related financial hardship and providing internet providers with discounted access to new business-grade services until 31 January next year.

“What this means is you may be entitled to discounts based on your circumstances amid this pandemic - whether you're a local GP requiring a speed upgrade, a business facing increasing cost pressures or need help paying extra data charges for home schooling kids - talk to your internet service provider about what assistance they can offer you,” Mr Joyce said.

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