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ACCC recommends changes to Consumer Law to ensure safety of consumer goods

Australia’s consumer and competition watchdog, the ACCC, is recommending changes to Consumer Law that require manufacturers take “reasonable steps” to ensure the products they sell are not unsafe.

The proposed “safety duty” is part of a global OECD campaign to highlight the importance of ensuring recalled products are removed from homes.

ACCC figures show that there are 6.6 million individual products currently under voluntary recall and reports that about half of these still likely to be found in people’s homes posing a potential risk to consumers.

“In Australia, two people die and 145 people are injured every day by unsafe consumer products,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

“Many people would be surprised to learn there is currently no law that requires businesses to not sell unsafe products. We believe prevention is better than cure, and that legally requiring businesses to take steps to ensure the safety of their products before they enter the market is needed to protect Australian consumers.”

The authority is urging consumers to sign up to the Product Safety Australia website to receive product recall alerts.

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