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Fair trading officers chalk it up to consumer rights

27 June 2017

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is dusting off the chalk after presenting to over 3800 students at 50 schools in the first school semester about the importance of understanding consumer rights.

Fair trading officers regularly visit schools and community organisations around Queensland, and are encouraging teachers or principals to get in touch to arrange a presentation at their school.

Fair Trading Executive Director Brian Bauer said it was important to provide young children with the right attitude, knowledge, understanding, and skillset to establish good consumer habits for the future.

“As money becomes less visible and easier to access, especially with in-app purchasing and online shopping, it’s important to talk to children about consumer rights and issues,” Mr Bauer said.

“If a young consumer purchases a faulty product for example, they need to know they have the right to a remedy, such as a refund or a repair.”

Schools and students are encouraged to get involved in the OFT’s annual Buy Smart Competition, which gets students thinking about consumer issues in a fun, creative way. Over $15,000 is offered in cash prizes for students and schools. Students can enter individually or in groups. Entries for the 2017 competition close on 15 September 2017.

In June, the OFT visited Kallangur State School where students are learning about their consumer rights and participating in the Buy Smart Competition for the first time.

Kallangur State School Head of Curriculum Jillian Hobbin said children today were increasingly exposed to online shopping and cashless payments.

“Online shopping and digital transactions are used more widely in our communities and I believe that it is important to teach our students to be aware of marketplace issues so they become confident and informed consumers,” said Mrs Hobbin.

“With an increase in scams and financial fraud, we must ensure students know how to recognise a ’dodgy deal’ and that they know their rights as a consumer.”

If you’d like the OFT to visit your school or community group or for more information on the Buy Smart Competition, please visit www.qld.gov.au/buysmartcomp or call 13 QGOV (13 74 68).

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Last updated
27 June 2017
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