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Rogers, Bell and Telus: We Support National Standards for Cellphone Contracts

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Canada’s ‘Big 3’ carriers along with the Public Interest Advocacy Centre on behalf of the Consumers’ Association of Canada without Poverty have come together and written a letter to the CRTC to pledge their support in favour of national standards for cellphone and wireless device contracts, an issue that strikes deep in the hearts of Canadians.

“We believe that enforceable national wireless standards, applied consistently across Canada, would address the demand for consumer protection in the most economically and administratively efficient manner and give consumers the same rights and benefits equally across the country,”

The statement notes recent provincial initiatives to simply cellphone contracts and details for consumers will cause further increased compliance costs; the carriers were clear to specify telecommunications is under the jurisdiction of the federal government.

In April, the CRTC asked for feedback from Canadians to decide whether or not a national wireless code is necessary.Telus had this to say in support of national code:

“Telus considers that it would be a tremendous benefit to all consumers if there was one simple, transparent and enforceable set of terms and conditions that apply to wireless contracts regardless of where you live in Canada.”

Wind Mobile noted legislation should be absolutely necessary to Canada’s wireless industry since the ‘Big 3’ being so entrenched, it’s the only way consumers can be protected.

The independent body setup by the federal government, Complaints to Telecommunications Services was setup to allow Canadians to voice concerns about the wireless industry. The commissioner said complaints in 2010-11 increased by 114% over the previous year to 8000, most related to billing errors and contract disputes.

We last heard Ontario had plans to introduce laws to make wireless services adhere to a provincial code, similar to what we have seen from Quebec, Manitoba and Nova Scotia.

Do we need a national wireless code? Or can we trust carriers manage themselves?

[via the CBC]

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