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APAS Connectivity Task Force researching internet issues in rural Saskatchewan areas

Some rural areas in Saskatchewan have poor internet and cell phone connections. Brenden Purdy / Global News

Agriculture Producers Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) is investigating barriers and hoping to find solutions to connectivity issues in rural areas of the province.

Poor internet and cellphone connections add challenges for farmers, but APAS vice-president and Connectivity Task Force member Ian Boxall hopes the new research can find solutions to improve bandwith for people all across Saskatchewan.

Read more: $252M agric-sector aid: APAS wants more federal funding for Saskatchewan producers

The Connectivity Task Force team will have members reaching out to people in different areas of the province. They will then be in touch with carriers.

“If we find out there’s some solutions that the government will implement, some of the concepts and ideas could force the providers to provide rural, remote communities and agriculture areas with the proper service that we need,” Boxall said.

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The survey isn’t just for producers. APAS will also be reaching out to Indigenous communities and people in rural communities.

“This is an important step towards addressing the digital divide in our province,” APAS president Todd Lewis said in a press release.

“Saskatchewan’s rural residents are losing out on opportunities because of a lack of service.  Reliable internet is needed for rural communities to support their businesses, students, health services, and  overall quality of life.”

A final report will be released in early 2021.

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