In August 2017 a new research centre was launched dedicated to improving access,
In August 2017 a new research centre was launched dedicated to improving access, fairness and protections for Victorian consumers – the Consumer Policy Research Centre (CPRC).
CPRC has been created to advance the interests of Victorian consumers in consumer policy and regulatory debates. As the successor to the Consumer Utilities Advocacy Centre, CPRC will draw on more than a decade of specialist utility policy and research, and will take the same rigorous, evidence-based approach to consumer issues relating to Australian Consumer Law and Victorian consumer property.
Lauren Solomon, CEO of CPRC, noted that ‘in an increasingly global and online marketplace, ensuring the fair treatment of consumers presents new policy challenges.’ CPRC will monitor grassroots consumer issues and the wider policy context to identify research priorities, and will retain a focus on the interests and needs of disadvantaged, rural and regional consumers in considering policy development and implementation. By collaborating closely with government, industry stakeholders and community organisations, CPRC will translate its research findings into policy, programs and fair trading practices to benefit all Victorians.
The CPRC will investigate areas such as changes in the housing market, dispute resolution and breaches of consumer law, and place Victoria at the forefront of consumer research.
Policy development will focus on:
- the development of an annual consumer index
- exploring areas of concern around consumer property law
- improving access and effectiveness of the dispute resolution process
- improving information and education in consumer decision making
- how the shift to buying online is affecting disadvantaged and vulnerable consumers.
COTA’S CEO, Ronda Held, is the Chair of the CPRC Board, so be assured the voice of older consumers will be heard!
Listen to the Consumer Policy Research Centre launch and panel discussion: