Consumer Interests

Why are standards relevant for the consumers?

 

Standards provide the nuts and bolts of modern society.  Ever thought why your mobile phone works away from home? Yes, standards. Ever thought why you need to carry a bag full of electrical adaptors when you travel abroad? That’s right a lack of standards!

 

But standards address more than the issues of interoperability for consumers. They are essential in making our everyday lives safe, more efficient and accessible. As standards determine the way in which a product or a service is designed or provided before it is placed on the market, they contribute in making products and services safer and more accessible. It is therefore vital for the consumer interest to be reflected in the development of European Standards to ensure the needs and expectations of consumers are met. A European standard is shaped by those who contribute to its development. All European Standards are adopted as national standards in the CEN and CENELEC member countries.

Why do you need to be represented in standardization?

 

Consumer representatives provide the perspective of the end-user of a consumer product or service in the standards development process. For instance, their contributions help ensure the requirements of a standard reflect the real-life use of a consumer product, and take into account the environment in which the product is used.

 

It is particularly important that the consumer view – as an element of the public interest - is reflected in European Standards requested (or “mandated”) by the European Commission to support implementation of European legislation (in the form of directives or regulations) that sets out essential safety requirements for product groupings such as toys, machinery, personal protective equipment, mobile phones, etc. Similarly, in European Standards that will support the implementation of public policies, such as ensuring the access of everyone to the built environment, regardless of the age or abilities of the person. 

World Consumer Rights Day

Every year, on March 15, standards give prominence to the World Consumer Rights Day.

Here are some examples:

  • Learn more about how standards can help consumers make more sustainable choices and contribute to improving the environment, with this dedicated factsheet #SustainableConsumer
  • Check-out this video on ‘Trusted Smart Products’ , which raises awareness on the digital issue of Smart Products, their potential benefits and challenges to consumers for a #BetterDigitalWorld
  • This infographic "World Consumer Rights Day" #BetterDigitalWorld, gives more information on how CEN, CENELEC and ANEC join forces in developing standards, which create a fair and secure digital market place.

 

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