In the News

MobileSyrup: Consumer groups advocate for new code of conduct, suitability rules on day two of CRTC hearings

A coalition of four Canadian consumer advocacy organizations delivered testimony on the second day of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s (CRTC) unsavoury telecom sales practices hearings.

Representatives from the Fair Communications Sales Coalition (FCSC) — comprised of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now Canada (ACORN Canada), the National Pensioners Federation (NPF) and the Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP) — used their time to further advocate for the implementation of a new telecom sales code of conduct, while also arguing in favour of implementing suitability rules within Canada’s telecommunications industry.

CBC: Cellphone retailers fail mystery shopping test, researchers plan to tell CRTC inquiry

When Sean Grassie​, Kristianne Anor and Tara Hristov headed to cellphone retailers in the Ottawa area recently, they weren't your average customers looking for a cellphone plan — they were University of Ottawa law students, on assignment as mystery shoppers.

Their mission? To test the consumer experience at the cellphone counter.

The students and the team's co-leader will present their "frustrating" findings today in Gatineau, Que., at a week-long CRTC public hearing into misleading and aggressive sales practices by Canada's telecom service providers.

CBC News: CRTC hears more calls for constraints on sales tactics of cable, internet firms

A coalition of groups representing consumers, seniors and low-income Canadians is recommending tough new rules to rein in the sales practices of Canada's telecommunications firms.

The groups made a joint submission Tuesday during the second day of CRTC hearings in Gatineau, Quebec. The CRTC is looking at whether cable and internet companies have been using aggressive or misleading sales pitches to sell their products.

John Lawford, executive director of the Public Interest Advocacy Centre, told CRTC commissioners the problem is severe even if cable companies won't admit it.

"The companies are in denial. They have major sales problems," Lawford said.


MobileSyrup: Rogers, Bell, Telus to CRTC: no evidence of widespread sales practice problem

Roughly two weeks after Canada’s Big Three carriers refuted claims of aggressive or misleading telecom sales practices in a Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) request for information, Rogers, Bell and Telus have filed new documents doubling down on their belief that there is no unsavoury telecom sales problem in Canada.


The Globe and Mail: Topping the list of must-have school supplies: internet access

This September, there are only two students in Riham Mohamed’s house, instead of three. She’s the one not going back to school: Ms. Mohamed is finally licensed as a pharmacist in Canada, able to practice the profession that she held in her home country of Egypt.

It was a long journey. Ms. Mohamed is a single mother, and settled with her two children, now 14 and 11, in Mississauga when she immigrated in 2012. She paid her bills working part-time for minimum wage as a pharmacy assistant, while also studying part-time at the University of Toronto. To afford tuition, she took out a $17,000 loan, which isn’t much less than her annual income.