I stand here today to fight for the people of Cottage Point, who have been denied the basic right of reliable mobile phone coverage in their area.
Cottage Point is a designated mobile blackspot community, and it is home to 83 adults and 54 families.
Its community includes a royal fire brigade, a marine rescue centre, a kiosk, a boatshed and even the Kuring-Gai Yacht Club—not to forget Seawing Airways.
Cottage Point is a tourist destination that attracts tens of thousands of tourists per year, and it is embarrassing that such a popular tourist destination cannot provide basic mobile phone reception and internet services to those who visit.
It is downright dangerous that emergency services cannot be contacted directly when phone reception drops out again.
The people of Cottage Point have been raising this issue since 2004—they have had 12 years of waiting in vain and fearing that tourism will decline and small businesses will struggle because of something that is preventable.
The Cottage Point community contributes close to $3 million a year to the tax system. They have no public transport, no water or sewerage, no garbage collection, no access to free-to-air television and no kerbing or guttering.
For some people, not having access to free-to-air television would be Nirvana, but all they ask for is basic mobile phone coverage so that their businesses can continue to operate.