Interested in consumer vulnerability? ANSI wants to hear from you.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has circulated a proposal for a new field of activity for a new ISO standard to be titled “Guideline for inclusive service—identifying and responding to consumers in vulnerable situations.” As the U.S. member body to ISO, ANSI is seeking interested stakeholders to submit comments on the proposal by April 7.
The proposal, submitted by ISO’s Consumer Policy Committee (COPOLCO) and BSI, explains that the new ISO standard would provide guidance on how to identify consumers in vulnerable situations and how to develop, implement, and maintain policies and procedures for organizations to handle them.
Consumer vulnerability is any circumstance that puts consumers at greater risk when choosing or using products or services. A variety of factors contribute to consumer vulnerability—which might be long or short term, temporary, permanent, or sporadic—including debt, unemployment, old age, mental health issues, and physical impairments.
An international standard would help organizations minimize consumer risk by:
- Raising awareness and understanding of consumer vulnerability.
- Giving guidance on how to identify consumers in vulnerable circumstances.
- Establishing processes and procedures that will help organizations respond to consumers in vulnerable situations.
All interested stakeholders are invited to review the proposal, which includes a listing of relevant documents at the international, regional, and national levels, and stakeholder categories that may benefit from by the proposal. View it on ANSI’s website.