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Students oriented on consumer rights

By Rosalita Manlangit

DAET, Camarines Norte --- The Department of Trade and Industry has launched a crash course on consumer rights and welfare at the Camarines Norte State College (CNSC).

The measure aims to also teach business and public administration students how to combat unfair or deceptive business practices.

“The younger generation is living in a world where online marketing is more prominent, especially through Facebook,” said Garry Rafanan, head of the Consumer Protection Division in the local office of DTI.

Rafanan said that DTI expanded its consumer education program to CNSC to ensure that young consumers are well-informed about their rights.

Gaiza Calajatu, a first-year student, shared how the topic of consumer rights and responsibilities intrigued her.

“DTI addressed all our concerns,” she said.

DTI Consumer Protection Division head Garry Rafanan discusses the ways to protect the youth from fraudulent online transactions during consumer rights seminar for first year students of College of Business and Public Administration of Camarines Norte State College.

“We asked about the legality of the ‘no return, no exchange’ policy, the return of defective items, and the applicability of warranties. The lecturers from DTI provided us with answers,” Calajatu said.

Princess Rose Gail Mananguete, Calajatu’s classmate, was unaware of the product standards until DTI introduced it in their classroom.

“From now on, I won’t be tricked into buying inferior products,” she declared.

Rafanan said that with the classroom lectures, DTI would be able to show that it offers its services to both consumers and businesses.

“We want to maintain a balance of bargaining power between consumers and producers and sellers of products and services so that consumers’ rights are fully protected,” he said.

Rafanan said the DTI plans to conduct at least 25 classroom sessions to educate the CNSC students about RA 7394, or the Consumer Act of the Philippines.

In addition, the sessions will also cover other laws that support consumer protection, such as the No Short-Changing Act of 2015, the Food Safety Act of 2014, the National Payment Systems Act of 2018, the Data Privacy Act of 2012, and the Philippine Lemon Law of 2013.

The CNSC has pledged its support for DTI’s consumer protection advocacy by signing a cooperation agreement with the agency. (PIA 5/Camarines Norte)


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