Abandoned in the market: The sad state of Canadian consumer protection

Wednesday, March 2, 2011 2:30 p.m.
518 Southam Hall, Carleton University
Michael Janigan
Executive Director and General Counsel
Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC)

thumb_pdfPIAC general counsel to address the sad state of Canadian consumer protection: March 2, Carleton University
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Starting in the last quarter of the twentieth century, governments began to rely on markets themselves to set the rules to protect consumers and the public interest, rather than government regulatory authority. At the same time, traditional defenders of the role of government in society began to concentrate on preserving public programs in such areas as health, education and the environment, and less on private sector behaviour in the marketplace. This lecture will examine how this occurred, the current results and potential remedies for indifference to the consumer economic stake.
As PIAC’s General Counsel, Michael Janigan has represented and advised consumer organizations and interests in regulated industries across North America. Based in Ottawa, his work has addressed key issues concerning the design of performance based rate making, competitive market design and the unbundling of utility services in telecommunications, energy and broadcasting industries. Under his direction, PIAC has advanced consumer protection concerns in competition law, privacy, electronic commerce. PIAC has also advocated rules for better treatment of consumers in the airline and financial services industry. His work has included participation in governmental initiatives to develop multilateral trade policy in areas such as competition and consumer protection. Mr. Janigan‘s practice has involved administrative litigation conducted in oral and written proceedings, research studies supporting the consumer perspective and appearances before parliamentary committees and government policy makers seeking law reform.
In 2009, Michael Janigan received a Community Leaders in Justice Fellowship from the Law Foundation of Ontario. The fellowship will enabled his study, teaching and other work with the Department of Law, Carleton University in Ottawa. Mr. Janigan has also taught in the Osgoode Hall LLM Professional Development Program.