B.C. government appoints advocate to lobby Ottawa for less-expensive cellphone bills

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      Cellphone bills have long been an irritating drain on the wallets of many British Columbians. Over the years, innumerable studies have shown that Canadians pay more for mobile coverage than residents of most other countries on Earth. Part of the reason why is because Canada consists of a very large landmass with a relatively small population. But that explanation has never satisfied many who compare their bills to rates around the world and argue that the math just does not add up.

      Today (November 19), Premier John Horgan appointed Bob D'Eith, the NDP MLA for Maple Ridge-Mission, to “advocate” for Ottawa to do something about high monthly bills that too-often no one understands.

      "We're fighting for the many seniors and families telling us first-hand they're vulnerable to aggressive sales tactics and hidden fees," D'Eith said quoted in a media release. "British Columbians have been loud and clear that they want easy-to-understand contracts, transparent monthly bills and more affordable plans."

      The appointment of D’Eith follows the publication of survey results that show B.C. residents have difficulty understanding their monthly statements, that the vast majority of people do not believe they receive good value for what they pay, and that unexpected charges remain a common problem.

      “Next steps include engaging stakeholders in more focused discussions and undertaking a legislative review of B.C.'s consumer protection laws,” the province’s release reads. “As well, the Province will engage with Canada's new government to advocate for better affordability and transparency in the federally regulated telecom sector.”