September 12, 2008 07:53 ET

Layton Will Stop Hidden Fees and Price-Gouging

Practical plan to help make life more affordable for ordinary consumers

ST JOHN'S, NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR--(Marketwire - Sept. 12, 2008) - New Democrat Leader Jack Layton today blasted the "unacceptable and outrageous" practices of many banks, oil companies, telecom and credit-card firms for contributing to the income squeeze on working and middle class families.

"Everyday Canadians are paying millions of dollars every year due to price-gouging and hidden fees of all sorts," said Layton. "The situation is so bad that even voices in the business community are rising in protest."

Layton quoted Diane Brisebois, president of the Retail Council of Canada, who said last Tuesday that "Canadian consumers are already paying $4.5 billion a year in hidden fees and will soon be paying more."

Layton outlined five practical measures to stop hidden fees and help consumers:

- End hidden fees with laws requiring full disclosure of charges by banks, cell-phone operators, and other companies. Including the unfair practice of charging more for cell phone text messages.

- Ban ATM fees.

- Stop price gouging at the gas pumps.

- Put a cap on interest rates and fees charged by 'fringe banks'.

- Cap the interest rates on credit cards.

"Consumers deserve protection. As Prime Minister, I'll stop hidden fees and price gouging and help make life affordable for everyday families", said Layton.

Contact Information

  • NDP Press Office: 613-236-3613 x 2833
    For Campaign 2008 Leader's Tour related requests:
    Karl Belanger, Press Secretary to Jack Layton,
    613-720-6463 (karl@ndp.ca)