Media release: Australians fed up with door-to-door sales urged to sign new petition

The Consumer Action Law Centre, tired of hearing stories of salespeople taking advantage of the vulnerable Australians, has launched a petition calling on Australia’s energy retailers to voluntarily end door-to-door sales. Australians who are fed up with annoying interruptions and high pressure sales tactics can make their voice heard at http://www.change.org/donotknock.

Gerard Brody, Director of Policy with Consumer Action, said the popularity of the ‘Do Not Knock’ sticker showed that Australians are looking to opt out of door-to-door sales and the selling tactics that go along with it.

‘Australians are tired of high pressure selling, they’re tired of being mislead about how much they ‘could’ save, and they’re sick of salespeople who simply won’t take no for an answer,’ said Mr Brody.

‘The majority of door-to-door complaints received by Consumer Action’s advice services and www.donotknock.org.au relate to energy sales. That why we’re looking to the energy companies themselves to bring respite to Australian households by voluntarily ending door-to-door sales.’

This idea is based on recent changes in the United Kingdom’s energy market where five of the so-called ‘Big Six’ energy retailers have agreed to a moratorium on door-to-door selling following calls from a consumer campaign.

Mr Brody said that, as things stand, retailers’ selling methods are undermining their public image, but that committing to give up door-to-door sales would earn significant good will from the community.

‘Our research shows only three per cent of Australians like door-to-door sales and our casework has shown us how door-to-door sales can be costly and stressful to households. We’d like energy retailers to show they can respond to consumer concerns and to do so sooner rather than later.’

Consumer Action recently received a complaint which outlined just how predatory salespeople can be:

I am writing in regards to my 80 year old grandmother. She has now been talked into signing up with four different power companies since December. All have been dearer than her original company!! She’s now been hit with cancellation fees from these companies…  These pushy door knockers should not be allowed to harass people like this especially the elderly!

These stories are all too common.

‘Australians wishing to add weight to Consumer Action’s push for energy retailers to end door-to-door selling should visit http://www.change.org/donotknock and sign the petition. It will be delivered directly to the chief executives of energy retailers that adopt door-to-door marketing strategies. It’s time to show the retailers that the community shares our concerns about their marketing practices,’ said Mr Brody.

END

Media Contact: Dan Simpson, 0413 299 567

To view a PDF of the media release please click: Australians fed up with door-to-door sales urged to sign new petition.

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