Six Nations hopes to bring fibre internet to community this fall

4 Internet browser logos. A blue letter e with a golden halo around it, a golden fox surrounding a blue sphere, a yellow red and green circle with a small blue circle in the center, and a blue and silver compass with a red and white dial.
First Nations Cable are looking for a $11 million grant from the provincial government to help bring fibre internet to the residents of Six Nations. Six Nations Elected Council say this is a big need for their community. Photo courtesy of Gerd Altmann/Pixabay.
Andrew Dow - CJKS - OhswekenON | 21-09-2022
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First Nations Cable presented an update to Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) on its current project to bring fibre internet to Six Nations to provide better service to the community. 

First Nations Cable representative Jeff Thomas said the project is well underway with two of the three phases of the project complete. The project has completed its planning mapping and designing stage and "back bone" stage which is a fibre connection line from Middleport to first nations cable’s office.

Thomas was hopeful to have the system ready by Sept. 5, but he said that the project has been pushed back a month due to a hardware issue for Hydro One. The company hopes to be up and running on Oct. 3. 

Thomas called this project a “phenomenal feat” because it will establish a 100 gigabit ethernet connection for community use. He said many municipalities "would love to have this (internet)”.

The final phase of this project, called “The Last Mile,” will be the actual installation of the fibre lines from its connection link that will feed the service to customers. First Nations Cable is in the process of finalizing a contract with the Government of Ontario that will fund this project, which Thomas said will be worth $11 million.  

Thomas hopes with the support of SNEC, this project will begin its final phase and hopes that there are no further delays once construction begins. 

“What I’m concerned about is we’ll get the project started and then we’re waiting for money," Thomas said "And with the contractors, I really don’t want to have to stop them, but I really can’t ask them to go on without being able to pay them.”

Thomas asked for SNEC to show support for the project and that they be involved in talks with the government over funding if necessary. 

Six Nations Chief Mark Hill voiced his concern over funds being held by the government and council’s overall support for the project.

“I’m just wondering if maybe our office can assist to have a meeting with all key stakeholders, First Nations Cable, The Chief’s Office, and representatives from the government”.

“Our job really is to support you, to support this community in getting what we need, so anything we can do (to help),” he continued.

Thomas said once the final phase begins he hopes the entire Six Nations Reserve will have access to fibre internet within three years.

Listen to the full CJKS story below: