The newest report from the Public Interest Network of the Consumers Council of Canada supports continued government action to make housing more affordable, and suggests that consumers are likely to decrease travel, while walking and cycling more to combat higher fuel costs.
The report is available online. The Council uses online questionnaires directed to the PIN to identify attitudes of consumers, and to help inform priorities for Council leadership. The questionnaire, conducted May 4 to 15, 2022 focused on consumer protection, information, education and choice. It re-asked many questions posed in previous questionnaires, so the results showed both current views and how those views have changed.
In addition to questions about housing and gasoline, participants were also asked about consumer protection priorities, enforcement and pandemic preparedness for a future COVID-like event. What did they rate as the safest of 20 different environments? (Hint: There’s no place like home.)
There were also notable shifts in how participants rated the adequacy of comparing product and pricing information in online stores compared to bricks and mortar stores. Participants also overwhelmingly endorsed that product information required by laws or voluntary codes to appear on product packaging (ingredient lists, hazards, etc.) should be part of online product descriptions.
A notable shift was recorded in how participants reacted to the effectiveness of regulation on businesses, and whether lowered regulatory costs (red-tape reduction) would result in lower prices to consumers.
The PIN is a national network of thoughtful, knowledgeable Canadian consumers organized by the Consumers Council of Canada. Joining the PIN is free for residents of Canada. Reports of prior PIN questionnaires dating back through 2020 are also available online.