On April 25 Cabinet approved the proposed Consumer Protection legislation and Junior Minister for Trade and Investment, Hon. Marlon Penn, who has been agitating for the Bill to become law announced last week that the proposed legislation was in the Attorney General’s Chambers for drafting.
The Territory’s need for Consumer Protection Legislation has been echoed for decades, and efforts to draft the Bill was made. However, it is believed that the price gouging and other issues that arose following hurricanes Irma and Maria expedited the process.
The news that the Bill has passed the Cabinet stage was delivered by Hon. Penn in the House of Assembly on 27 April as he informed the Members of the House that the Bill should be before them by summer for approval.
The Junior Minister explained that the legislation is comprehensive and takes a holistic approach to issues of consumer protection. According to Hon. Penn the draft Bill includes areas that focus on protection for businesses, especially those dealing with unfair accusations. “We are eager for this legislation…We saw what happened with the price gouging and people who manipulate prices during the recent activities,” Hon. Penn said.
Back in January both Premier and Minister for Finance, Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith, and Hon. Penn announced that the long awaited Consumer Protection legislation is expected to be passed this year. While speaking at a press conference on 18 January Hon. Penn noted that he is just as eager to see the legislation before the House. He told reporters that his position is well chronicled on the matter and that the Trade Department has been pushing the initiative forward.