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GOVERNMENT RELATIONS

ON BEHALF OF ITS MEMBERS, THE DIRECT SELLING ASSOCIATION PLAYS AN ACTIVE ROLE IN THE PUBLIC ARENA, IMPACTING POLICY AND ADVOCATING FOR IMPORTANT ISSUES. 

KEY FUNCTIONS

Keeping abreast of legislative issues that affect direct selling
Remaining a constructive influence with policy makers by maintaining active relationships with key government portfolios
Communicating to inform members of relevant issues through various channels and vehicles such as periodic action alerts, a legislative manual, and a municipal licensing registry
Reviewing member company marketing plans and documentation to ensure regulatory and government compliance

ISSUES ADVOCACY

As the voice for Canada's direct selling industry, the DSA positions many hot-button concerns on the radar of key levels of government through our Government Affairs Committee and its subcommittee for Taxation and for Health Canada.


HOT TOPICS

More recently, the DSA committees have been involved in issues that include:
  • Bill C-51
  • The amendment to the Telecommunications Act reflecting the implementation of a national do-not-call list
  • The amendment to Cosmetic Regulations with the implementation of mandatory ingredient labeling
  • A proposal for a new Canada Health Protection Act that will replace the Food & Drugs Act, among others
  • Tax requirements for independent sales consultants
  • Provincial, eco/environmental mandates on packaging, compensation for reclaiming residual materials, etc.
  • MEETING SUMMARIES

    DSA executives enjoyed positive, supportive meetings with the Prime Minister's Office and the Standing Committee on Health to unclog the backlog of registrations due to new, onerous mandates of the Natural Health Products Regulations.

    Requesting a status update from the Therapeutic Products Directorate, the DSA learned there's no longer a prohibition on four (4) previously banned active ingredients in sun screens. We then advised members to review the revised monograph at Health Canada.

    The DSA joined others in a coalition that met with a Federal Finance advisor to oppose a proposed net income test and the introduction of REOP.

    The DSA, part of a government committee for Alberta / B.C., met to build a ground breaking internal trade agreement that also amalgamates legislation with the promise to include direct sellers.

    The DSA met with Eco Entreprises Quebec to oppose exemptions and small business fees as proposed in Quebec's new compensation regime to reclaim residual materials. Also, the DSA surveyed its members to develop our position and determine if/how to negotiate on members' behalf.

    IMPACTING POLICY

    The DSA is committed to bringing persuasive information to all levels of government, actively shaping policy.

    FEDERAL


    Government of Canada Takes Action to Limit the Employment Insurance Premium Increase for 2011 to Five Cents
    (September 30, 2010) The government announced it will be scaling back planned increases in EI premiums.  For 2011, EI premiums will rise 5 cents per $100 in insurable earnings for employees and 7 cents for employers instead of the maximum 15 cents and 21 cents respectively, which had been proposed.  For 2012, premiums will be increased by 10 cents per $100 in insurable earnings for employees and 14 cents for employers.  These changes will save Canadian businesses over $640 million in 2011 and $320 million in 2012. 

    The increased rates (employee portion only) will also apply to the new Self Employed EI benefit program announced by the government earlier this year (insert link on DSA web page).   
    The DSA applauds the government for listening to Canadian individuals and businesses on the potential negative impact that the originally proposed rate increases may have had on the Canadian economy by smoothing out the premium increases.

    Click here for the complete story.


    New Employment Insurance Special Benefits for the Self-Employed
    (November 2009)  The Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, introduced the Fairness for the Self-Employed Act in the House of Commons.  The legislation proposed to extend Employment Insurance (EI) special benefits, including maternity, parental, sickness and compassionate care benefits, to the self employed.

    Click here for the complete story.

    GST and Direct Selling
    The House of Commons was very receptive to our annual pre-budget submission and, based on our recommendations, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance asked for follow-up action on the GST Direct Selling Mechanism to expand it to all direct selling companies.
    Pre-Budget Submissions:

    GST and dietary beverages
    DSA took an active stand when Canada Customs and Revenue Agency changed GST rules for dietary supplement beverages. This has since led to periodic meetings with CRA officials on other industry-related issues.. 

    Regulations for nutraceuticals
    The Association also participated in public and private consultations with Health Canada officials as the federal government drafts regulations governing natural health products, submitting a substantial report on the impact on the direct selling industry.

    Cross-border transactions
    The DSA advised the federal-provincial Consumer Measures Committee on how jurisdiction should be determined in cross-border business-to-consumer transactions.

    PROVINCIAL

    Ontario Ministry of the Environment - Waste Diversion Act:

    MUNICIPAL


    Home business bylaws
    Winnipeg's elected officials heard our concerns (and solutions) for home business licensing, the high cost for independents to do business, the predictable decline in direct selling, and effects on its economy. Our recommendations to ease the bylaws' negative impacts have, we have reason to hope, motivated the City to resolve this. (We allocated considerable resources to this study because of its potential ripple effect in other Canadian municipalities.)

    RESOURCE CENTRE

    Looking for information on your rights as a consumer? Or perhaps you’re an independent Sales Contractor for information on the business expenses that are deductible from an income tax perspective. We hope this list of resources will help to save you valuable time in finding what you need.

    FEDERAL
    PROVINCIAL CONSUMER DEPARTMENTS
    Disclaimer: There may be Web sites linked to and from this site that are operated or created by organizations other than the Canadian Direct Sellers Association. Those organizations are solely responsible for the operation and information (including the right to display such information) found on their respective Web sites. These linked Web sites may or may not be available in French. The linking to or from this site does not imply on the part of the Canadian Direct Sellers Association any endorsement or guarantee of any of the organizations or information (including the rights to display such information) found on their respective Web sites. The Canadian Direct Sellers Association does not assume and is not responsible for any liability whatsoever for the linking of any of these linked We sites, the operation or content (including the right to display such information) of any of the linked Web sites, nor for any of the information, interpretation, comments or opinions expressed in any of the linked Web sites. Any comments or inquiries regarding the linked Web sites are to be directed to the particular organization for whom the particular Web site is being operated.