Government Hears Consumers and Orders CRTC to Inquire into Communications Overselling

OTTAWA – The Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) today welcomed the announcement of a public inquiry into aggressive and inappropriate sales tactics in the telecommunications industry.

The Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED), the Hon. Navdeep Bains, today requested the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to open a public inquiry into how major telecommunications providers sell services such as home internet, cable TV and IPTV, as well as home phone and wireless service to Canadians, from door-to-door sales, to call centres, to retail outlets and online.

John Lawford, Executive Director and General Counsel at PIAC, said in reaction to the inquiry: “The government has heard the groans of Canadian consumers who too often end up with a bad deal for their Internet, TV and phone services,” he noted. “We are pleased that the Minister has reversed the CRTC’s previous refusal to inquire into these shocking sales practices and we hope that public trust in this industry can be restored as a result.”

PIAC had reacted negatively to a previous letter from the Chair of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) rejecting PIAC’s call for the CRTC to pursue a public inquiry into reported inappropriate, aggressive and potentially misleading sales of communications services.

“We hope Canadian consumers and former and current sales representatives of the companies will tell their stories of overselling and underhanded tactics to the CRTC,” further noted Lawford. “We look forward to participating actively and asking tough questions to the major service providers” he added, noting that PIAC would actively participate in the review.

For more information please contact:

John Lawford
Executive Director & General Counsel
Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC)
office: (613) 562-4002 ×25

cellphone: 613-447-8125
lawford@piac.ca
www.piac.ca

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