Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 15, 2023 (SKNIS): Consumers in St. Kitts and Nevis are strongly encouraged to “read and research” before purchasing goods or services so that they can make informed decisions and get the best quality available.
Tricia Rawlins, the Communications Officer at the Department of Consumer Affairs, shared the advice on Wednesday’s edition of the radio and television programme InFocus, which highlighted consumer-related issues in commemoration of World Consumer Rights Day, observed annually on March 15.
“Don’t just buy things because they are on sale,” Ms. Rawlins stated. “It is your responsibility to know what you are buying because in the event that you buy a product or purchase a service and you go home, and you no longer want it, a business is not entitled to give you a refund just because you changed your mind.”
Consumers have a right to not be misled by false advertising and to have contracts that are clear and comprehensible.
As it relates to consumer responsibilities, the communications officer shared that consumers also have the responsibility to be informed and educated, as well as a responsibility to act with reasonable care and not cause damage to property or harm to other people.
Paul Queeley, Director of the Department of Consumer Affairs, stressed that dissatisfied consumers must not take matters into their own hands.
“When persons encounter an issue with a merchant, do not try to create confusion in the business place. That is something I think that persons need to hear and understand,” said Director Queeley. “Most times when we have a case, the businesses refuse to actually deal with the consumer. So, when you have an issue with a product, if you cannot get it addressed amicably, try to come to the Consumer Affairs Department, and we will address it for you.”
Mr. Queeley emphasized that persons must “be responsible” at that moment and avoid creating a “big situation out of something that can be resolved quite easily.”
To interact with the Department of Consumer Affairs, persons can visit the offices at Bladens or telephone 467-3211 or 1150. Online contact is available via the website: www.miticca.gov.kn/ or a direct message can be sent from https://www.facebook.com/consumeraffairsskn/
InFocus airs live every Wednesday at 1 p.m. on ZIZ Radio. It is also live-streamed on the YouTube Channels and Facebook Pages of ZIZ and SKNIS.