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December 2010

CCTS Mandate Extended Five More Years; All Service Providers Must Join

At the conclusion of a proceeding commenced last April, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) announced yesterday that it is extending the mandate of CCTS to investigate consumer telecom complaints for a further five year period.  In addition, now all Canadian telecommunications service providers will be required to participate in CCTS, thus extending the organization’s coverage to all Canadian telecom consumers.  Prior to this decision, only service providers with revenues greater than $10 million were required to participate.

“When CCTS was created in 2007, this was a win for consumers, who for the first time had an independent third-party to which they could turn for redress with their telecom complaints” said CCTS Commissioner Howard Maker.  “During the proceeding, both consumer groups and participating service providers told the Commission that CCTS has been extremely successful at resolving consumer complaints.  With this decision, the CRTC has recognized our effectiveness and has given us the opportunity to serve even more Canadian consumers”, added Maker.

The CRTC decision was given orally.  Written reasons, intended to address implementation of the new service provider participation obligations, are expected to be released in January.

A link to the transcript of the hearings that took place in Gatineau, Quebec, can be found at http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/transcripts/2010/index.htm#tt1129