The new Consumer Protection Act severely limits the use of consumers personal information for unsolicited direct marketing initiatives, and an opt-out data base will...

The new Consumer Protection Act severely limits the use of consumers personal information for unsolicited direct marketing initiatives, and an opt-out data base will be kept of those consumers who choose not to receive any direct marketing material at al

500_020611081801_111_995

-As of 1 April this year, the mountains of junk mail in your letterbox and calls from persistent telemarketers should have diminish drastically with the introduction of tough new regulations on direct marketing. Consumers can also place themselves on a ‘don’t mail me, don’t phone me’ list, and the new Consumer Protection Act obliges suppliers to refund, repair or replace faulty goods.

This was the word from Managing Director of local law firm Joubert Galpin Searle, MC Botha, who took business owners on a whistle stop tour of the proposed Consumer Protection Act on 22 March 2011. The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber board room played host to representatives from every business sector interested to know how the new Act affects both them and their customers.

The Act applies to every transaction between one and another person in the ordinary course of business, aimed at doing away with false, misleading and deceptive consumer practices.

Stand out points in Botha’s presentation – those that garnered the most interest and response from his audience – included references to guidelines for direct marketing, and recourse and responsibility in the face of a dissatisfied customer.

The new Consumer Protection Act severely limits the use of consumers’ personal information for unsolicited direct marketing initiatives, and an opt-out data base will be kept of those consumers who choose not to receive any direct marketing material at all. Botha advised all who attended to place their brand promises under close scrutiny and to adjust them as necessary, as any product or service that does not deliver will be subject to the Act and business owners can and will be held accountable for products or services that do not deliver within reasonable expectations.

The new Act advocates fair and responsible marketing practices. Business owners and suppliers are required to provide quality goods, reasonably suited to the purpose for which they were intended, in good order and free of defects, usable and durable for a reasonable period of time. In the case of faulty goods, suppliers will have the three ‘R’ options – refund, repair or replace.

Says former Business Chamber’s Deputy President Jane Stevenson: “I am thrilled that the Business Chamber took the initiative to inform people about the far-reaching consequences of the Act on both businesses and consumers.  Some of the information provided is daunting, but local business must inform itself and embrace consumer protection.”

 

About the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber:

The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber is the most representative member-based business organization in Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, our members representing both big business and small to medium enterprises across all sectors. We are committed to economic development in the province, and the initiation and facilitation of key economic projects that will act as catalysts for economic growth, with a focus on skills and infrastructure development.

News editor