The Government is proposing combining its five consumer bodies in an intiative to improve consumer protection – the Financial Services Consumer Panel, National Consumer Council, Energywatch, Postwatch and Ofcom Consumer Panel.
Consumer Minister Gerry Sutcliffe says bringing together the five organisations, which will be called Consumer Direct, will provide a clearer, simpler and more effective voice for consumers and more help to tackle problems.
Ombudsmen will be better utilisied to help customers experiencing problems.
Sutcliffe says: Well informed, empowered consumers are a vital part of achieving fair, competitive markets. Consumer bodies provide an invaluable service but we have to make sure that consumers get help in an accessible and efficient way.
Consumer Direct is already rolling out across the country, providing consumers with help and advice on a range of issues. This consultation outlines the Government’s proposals to make consumer representation even more effective and accessible and I hope that anyone with an interest will let us have their views.”