Working online from home continues to be hampered by a lack of connectivity in parts of Inishowen.
Councillor Albert Doherty says there are still significant broadband issues facing people who need to or choose to work from home.
National Broadband Ireland (NBI) is the company tasked with building high speed broadband networks in the rural areas that private companies, like Eir, Vodafone or Virgin, consider economically unviable.
You can check your availability for broadband in Inishowen by visiting the NBI map search on the NBI website.
NBI is tasked with surveying all parts of the Republic which lack high speed broadband and then building the fibre-optic network.
Surveys have been completed in the south and east Inishowen areas, and a survey is under way in north Inishowen.
However, many of the businesses and homes survey in the south and east Inishowen areas won’t be connected to the high speed fibre broadband until 2025-26 – at least.
It is estimated that 6,227 businesses and homes still have to be connected with that figure likely to rise somewhat.
A survey was conducted in the south and east Inishowen areas to find premises that are fibre enabled, with NBI saying it’s now working on ‘detailed network design’.
The survey of the north Inishowen district is currently under with 2,904 premises waiting on fibre broadband.
South Inishowen has 1,961 premises requiring installation while east Inishowen is waiting on the installation of 1,362 customers to fibre optic broadband.
Due to poor broadband some people must use one of the seven remote working hubs around the peninsula. These hubs allow people to rent a space in a premises to access high speed broadband.
Carndonagh-based councillor Albert Doherty said some people cannot consider remote working due to poor broadband services or complete lack of it.
“There are people who would benefit and their work would benefit from having better access and greater access in the rollout,” he said.
Cllr Doherty emphasises that much more needs to be done to ensure everyone has access to broadband. He wants Donegal to be treated fairly and be supplied with high quality broadband in the near future.
“I’m always looking for a level playing field,” the Sinn Féin representative said.
“I would like to think that Inishowen and Donegal would be able to target and avail of services as soon as possible, especially when our Council are promoting the Diaspora and the relocation marketing campaign.
“The Council is receiving significant calls about relocating and working in Donegal. After Covid, local people found they were able to work from home, but in some areas we are being met by a roadblock where broadband is insufficient or not up to standard.”
Councillor Doherty added that he believes the rollout timeframe of 2025- 26 is unsatisfactory and should be sped up.
“I do know that on occasions equipment or personnel or lack of personnel delayed the rollout,” he said.
“There was a particular family in Malin who wanted to conduct their business from home felt there was a dance and a merry go-round to get specific answers and assurances.
“I certainly believe that the timeline should be reviewed and speeded up.”