Bell Canada selects Ericsson as 5G network equipment supplier

MONTRÉAL, June 2, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ – Bell Canada today announced that Ericsson will provide radio access network (RAN) equipment for Bell’s national 5G wireless network, including for the unique Wireless Home Internet service Bell has developed to bring high-speed Internet access to rural Canada. An existing supplier of 4G LTE wireless and other technology to Bell, Ericsson has to date signed 92 commercial 5G agreements with telecom providers worldwide and is the first company to enable commercial 5G networks on 4 continents.

“Bell’s 5G strategy supports our goal to advance how Canadians connect with each other and the world, and Ericsson’s innovative 5G network products and experience on the global stage will be key to our rollout of this game-changing mobile technology across Canada,” said Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE Inc. and Bell Canada. “Investment and scale in leading-edge networks is critical to national competitiveness, economic growth and resiliency, highlighted by the important role that Bell’s wireless, fibre and broadcast networks have played in Canada’s response to COVID-19. With the support of Ericsson and our other 5G partners, Bell looks forward to ensuring Canada remains at the forefront of the next generation of mobile communications.”

Niklas Heuveldop, President and Head of Ericsson North America, said: “We are proud to have earned Bell’s trust to be selected as one of their key partners and significantly expand our existing relationship to accelerate the transformation of their network with 5G mobile and fixed wireless technology. With our industry-leading 5G product portfolio, Bell will be able to provide Canadian consumers, enterprises and the public sector with innovative experiences and services whether they’re on the move or at home, regardless if they’re in urban or rural areas.”

Bell 5G: Building on wireless leadership
While Bell has focused fully on ensuring Canadians would remain connected and informed throughout the COVID-19 crisis, the company is poised to launch initial 5G as the economy opens up.

As with previous wireless and wireline network deployments, Bell is working with multiple equipment suppliers for its 5G rollout. This multi-vendor strategy has been key to delivering Canada’s best national mobile network with Bell 4G LTE, now available in every province and territory to more than 99% of the national population. Independent studies have found that Canadian 4G LTE networks like Bell’s rank with the fastest in the world – and even rival data speeds offered by initial 5G networks already available in countries like South Korea.

Bell’s initial 5G service will offer faster top-end data speeds than LTE at launch, and capable smartphones are already available from Bell including the Samsung Galaxy S20 5G series, LG V60 ThinQ 5G Dual Screen and Motorola Edge+. Bell 5G will continue to grow in speed, capacity and coverage as additional 5G wireless spectrum becomes available, including in the federal government’s 3.5 GHz spectrum auction later this year. Ericsson will also support Bell’s rollout of 5G-enhanced Wireless Home Internet service to more small towns and rural locations in future.

“Ericsson plays an important role in enabling Bell’s award-winning LTE network and we’re pleased to grow our partnership into 5G mobile and fixed wireless technology,” said Stephen Howe, Bell’s Chief Technology Officer. “5G’s high-capacity and near-instant connections will enable next-generation applications like mobile 4K video and immersive augmented reality, connected vehicles and industrial IoT automation on a massive scale, and our plan is to deliver the benefits of the 5G wireless revolution to cities and rural locations alike.”

About Ericsson
Ericsson enables communications service providers to capture the full value of connectivity. The company’s portfolio spans Networks, Digital Services, Managed Services, and Emerging Business and is designed to help our customers go digital, increase efficiency and find new revenue streams. Ericsson’s investments in innovation have delivered the benefits of telephony and mobile broadband to billions of people around the world. The Ericsson stock is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and on Nasdaq New York.

Bell to sell 25 data centre facilities to Equinix

  • Transaction underscores Bell’s focus on investment in networks and service innovation
  • Bell Business Markets becomes first Equinix Platinum Partner in Canada

MONTRÉAL, June 1, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ – BCE Inc. (Bell; (TSX: BCE) (NYSE: BCE)) today announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell 25 data centres at 13 sites to global interconnection and data centre company Equinix, Inc. in an all-cash transaction valued at Cdn $1.04 billion.

“This transaction reinforces Bell’s strategy to focus investment on the network infrastructure, content and services necessary to advance how Canadians connect with each other and the world. Equinix, with its expanding platform of data centres here in Canada and worldwide, is well-positioned to maximize the opportunities these facilities represent for Canadian businesses in an increasingly global and interconnected data sector,” said Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE Inc. and Bell Canada.

“Our strategic redeployment of capital further underscores Bell’s commitment to champion customer experience by leading investment in communications networks and services, especially as Canada manages and recovers from the COVID-19 crisis,” said Mr. Bibic. “As part of ensuring a seamless customer experience for our enterprise clients, we are also pleased to announce today a partnership between Bell Business Markets and the Equinix Platform of global data centre services.”

Equinix is acquiring 13 sites representing 25 Bell data centre facilities in 8 cities across Canada; Bell will continue to own and operate 5 other data centres that are located in its network central offices in Calgary, Halifax, Saint John, St. John’s and Toronto. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2020 subject to customary closing conditions including regulatory approval.

Equinix‘s Platinum Partner in Canada
As part of the transaction, Bell Business Markets becomes the first Equinix Platinum Partner in Canada, which will provide Bell enterprise clients with full access to the international scale of Equinix’s advanced integrated network and cloud solutions.

“Our new partnership with Equinix, built on the strength of Bell’s network, cloud service innovation and experienced professional services team, combined with Equinix’s global platform of interconnected data centres and business ecosystem, will deliver a superior customer experience for our Canadian enterprise clients,” said Tom Little, President of Bell Business Markets. “We look forward to working together to enhance the reach of our customers’ growing global digital operations while ensuring Canada remains a world leader in digital transformation.”

Stop the violence against Indigenous women and girls


Unifor stands united with the families of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls and calls on all levels of government to take immediate action on the recommendations issued in the final report of the National Inquiry.

June 3, 2020 marks one year since the publication of the final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The report contains 231 calls for justice that form the road map for ending violence and move forward meaningfully towards justice, truth, and reconciliation.

Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations Carolyn Bennett has admitted not only was no plan going to be in place by June 2020, but there is no timeline for the plan’s completion.

Tell Minister Bennett there’s no time to waste—work with Indigenous organizations and get to work on a National Action Plan!




Co-op Refinery spill highlights dangers of relying on scab workers


REGINA—Unifor Local 594 is extremely disappointed, but not surprised, to learn of the major loss of containment from the Co-op Refinery Complex that occurred on May 22, 2020, that resulted in the contamination of the City of Regina’s sewer system.

“With the Co-op Refinery using inexperienced scab labour to operate an intricate and complex refinery, it’s these types of major incidents that we were afraid of when we were locked out back on December 5, 2019,” said Kevin Bittman, Local 594 President. “I’ve worked at the refinery for 23 years, and windy conditions are not abnormal in Saskatchewan, so Mr. DeLorey’s explanation doesn’t have merit. There is more to this than just weather.”

It was reported in the Leader-Post on May 29, 2020, that the Co-op Refinery is guilty of discharging an “unknown amount” of oil into the City of Regina sewer system. The alarming fact that it was the City of Regina that discovered the spill, and was not reported by the Co-op Refinery, should concern almost everyone.

“Our hardworking members are highly skilled and highly trained for these exact scenarios and it’s clear we are the key to safety at the refinery. Bringing in replacement workers from out-of-province with little to no training and throwing them in to operating the refinery is a recipe for disaster,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

This latest spill is not an isolated incident. Since the lockout began there have been numerous spills and releases that have the potential for significant impact on the environment. Picture and videos have circulated the internet of catalyst excursions to the atmosphere, abnormal sulphur releases, and transporting tank cars with the lids open or covered in product from spills during the loading process. These are just a few examples of incidents we have become aware of. Much like the latest spill, it’s impossible to say what else has gone unreported.

“At this point, it’s not clear what else needs to happen before Premier Scott Moe shows leadership and legislates an end to the lockout. Our lives have been threatened on the picket lines and at our homes, and now the environment has been impacted. It shouldn’t take a catastrophic event to occur before the government ends this,” said Dias.

Local 594 will be calling on the Ministry of Environment, and all other appropriate agencies, to conduct a full and thorough investigation into the release from the Co-op Refinery. There are real concerns that once oil enters the city wastewater system that it can easily migrate into the Qu’Appelle Valley water way that many farmers use for irrigation and drinking water. This incident is drawing similarities to the 2016 Husky spill into the North Saskatchewan River.

The collective agreement between Local 594 members and the Co-op Refinery Complex expired on February 1, 2019. Local 594 represents nearly 730 members. The union has accepted the recommendations of Special Mediators Vince Ready and Amanda Rogers, but the Co-op Refinery has rejected the mediators’ report and this unnecessary lockout continues.

Unifor applauds investigation of Ontario’s oversight of long-term care during pandemic

June 3, 2020

TORONTO – Unifor applauds the decision of the Ontario Ombudsman to investigate the provincial government’s oversight of long-term care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“One thing that we know for certain is that this pandemic publicly exposed the precariousness of the long-term care system that we have been raising red flags about for years now,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “We know for a fact that if nursing homes were properly staffed, especially with personal support workers, we would have been in a much better position to weather a pandemic.”

Six months ago, the Ontario Health Coalition report commissioned by Unifor “Caring in Crisis; Ontario’s Personal Support Worker Crisis” was released at Queens Park. The report, compiled from a series of cross-province roundtable meetings with all stakeholders, raised the alarm over chronic short-staffing and mass exodus of PSWs leaving the industry.

As that report was released, Dias issued a challenge to Premier Doug Ford to spend one shift with him in a nursing home to see first-hand the everyday realities faced by workers and residents.

“While we appreciate any effort that puts the spotlight on what is happening in long-term care, it is disappointing that the voices of so many women on the frontlines have been ignored for so long,” said Naureen Rizvi, Ontario Regional Director. “We can only hope that the Ombudsman will focus on listening to those women now.”

The union believes the pandemic has lit fire to a tinder box of problems, where PSW’s are first on the front lines. “No-one should be surprised that eight out of the 11 health care workers who have died from COVID-19 in Ontario are PSWs, who provide the most personal of care, with the least access to personal protective equipment,” said Dias.

Information about the union’s response to the pandemic, as well as resources for members can be found at