03/17/2016 08:27 EDT | Updated 03/18/2017 05:12 EDT

CRTC To Offer Consumers New Way To Complain About TV Services

CCTS already handles complaints about wireless and internet. Now TV will be included.


OTTAWA — TV watchers are expected to get a new place to complain if they have problems with their service that the television service providers can't seem to resolve on their own.

Industry observers say the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission will include television services in a new, expanded mandate for the country's telecom complaints watchdog to be announced today.

The CRTC proposed a year ago that the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services (CCTS) include television disputes in its mandate.

The CCTS already handles complaints about Internet, telephone and wireless services.

But it has turned away thousands of complainants who came to it in recent years with problems involving cable or satellite television services.

The body, which was created in 2007, is currently funded by the telecom industry but is required to act independently in recommending resolution of disputes between consumers and service providers over issues such as billing, contracts and service.

Observers also expect the CRTC to announce measures today to promote awareness of the complaints commissioner.

Consumer advocates have been critical of the telecom companies for not doing enough to promote the CCTS as an avenue of last resort for unresolved complaints.