AFCA gives consumer groups key input

Consumer groups have been delivered direct input into the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) via a newly-formed Consumer Advisory Panel.

The panel consists of 10 consumer representatives and is being chaired by a the former executive officer of the Financial and Consumer Rights Council and former Consumer Action Law Centre board member, Peter Gartlan.

Confirming establishment of the panel, AFCA chief executive and chief ombudsman, David Locke said it would provide important insights on issues and ensure consumer needs were being met.

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“AFCA exists to deliver fair solutions to financial disputes, to provide access to justice for consumers and small business owners, and to work with industry to improve its practices and minimise disputes arising in the first place,” Locke said.

“Consumer organisations see thousands of people every year and have unique perspectives that can help inform AFCA’s work,” he said. “AFCA is a new organisation and open feedback is important as we continue to improve our processes and services.

“We have ensured that we have selected Panel members who represent the community we serve, including older Australians, Indigenous and Torres Strait Islanders, vulnerable communities and those with financial difficulties.”

Locke said the panel would meet quarterly in different locations across Australia.

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If AFCA or any other regulator wants to understand consumers they should stop wasting time with CHOICE or CALC. Those groups have been hijacked by left wing idealogues who are using them as a vehicle to impose their hard core views on others. CHOICE in particular used to be a great consumer representative group. Unfortunately the people running CHOICE and CALC now neither understand nor care about normal consumers.

Pity the Financial Planning industry dosen't have bodies that represent them. We are certainly an easy target given we have no representation. Nothing but red tape and compliance will be the outcome.

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