The Trading Standards

The Trading Standards Institute is the professional association which represents trading standards professionals in the UK and overseas. It was founded in 1956. The Trading standard service enforces the law and regulations that govern goods and services which we all buy, hire or sell in support of better communities, economic vitality and national prosperity. The Service is delivered by local government (the Department of Enterprise in Northern Ireland) and includes advice services for business and consumers.

Trading Standards services work in partnership with 'Consumer Direct', a call centre based consumer advice service that will be available across the UK from April 2006. Consumer Direct' provides a single contact point where simple enquiries may be dealt with directly and others referred to the relevant Trading Standards office. They now deal with more diverse issues under a wide variety of Acts, Orders and Codes of Practice, as set out by central government and the Office of Fair Trading.

Such legislation includes the Trade Description Act 1968, the Consumer Protection Act 1987 and the Price Marking Order 2004. The Trading Standards Service ensures a safe and fair trading environment for consumers and businesses alike. At its heart are qualified and dedicated officers, trained to be expert in their fields. From the trading standard website you can see they have a wide range of sections for you to look at on their website, general information and links to other websites.

For instance career & education you may want a job as a trading standard officer, there's also events in which you can take part in or you could just become a member. Environmental Health comprises those aspects of human health, including quality of life, that are determined by physical, chemical, biological, social, and psychosocial factors in the environment. If these aspects are not controlled, corrected and prevented, then these factors can affect the environment for the present and the future.

The Environmental health's also have services which implement environmental health policies through monitoring and control activities. They also carry out that role by promoting the improvement of environmental parameters and by encouraging the use of environmentally friendly and healthy technologies and behaviours. They also have a leading role in developing and suggesting new policy areas. Below are examples of environmental health websites such as NIEHS and Health house:

From the web site NIEHS and Health house you can see that they are very interested in our health and would like to help by providing lots of information on how to stop our selves from being in risk of health danger. They would also like us to join them in their meetings and events to pass on the message about Environmental health. Citizens' Advice Bureau (CAB) is one of a chain of local bureaux throughout the UK which give information, advice and sometimes casework, free of charge to all comers. A CAB is not a department of central or local government, but a local charitable voluntary organization.

It is totally non-selective in its clients and impartial in dealing with all sorts of persons and problems. The CAB service has an open-ended scope, but principally helps people by investigating their problems, exploring and explaining their options, and where appropriate helping to contact and deal with the relevant officials and counterparties. The work involved in these services varies from; different issues such as welfare benefits, housing, asylum and consumer complaints. Advice is also available from the community like, from people's home either by email or telephone.

The Citizens Advice service is one of the largest volunteer organizations in the UK with over 21,000 volunteers (the majority of these being part time volunteer advisors with a reliable amount of training, but also trustees and administrators). Typically a few paid managers, supervises and other part-time staff may support a number of other part time supervised volunteers. From the Citizens advice website you can see there are lots of different information and advice on the different criteria's you are looking for.

They also have annual reports, how to support them, by supporting them you can provide donations for the citizen advice bureaux to provide vital services in the community. There are also lots of job opportunities. The Consumer Associations is a consumer rights organization in the UK, founded in 1957 by Michael Young. It is an organization which defends consumers' rights by investigating a wide range of goods and services and publishing reports on particular investigation or tests it has carried out on the consumer's behalf.

It also lobbies industry and government to promote consumer' interest. There are also trade organizations. These are organizations of business which defend their rights. They might take action, for instance to curb the power of larger powerful suppliers or customers. Other unofficial bodies that exist to protect the consumer's rights are- the BBC's Watchdog series of programs, the citizen advice bureaux and the consumer advice centre's. Examples of their websites are shown below: From the consumer association website which?

You can see they provide an independent and interactive consumer advice service from the experts at which? They also have magazines which you can subscribe to when you become an online member of their website. The magazine offers a wealth of expert advice and information on an immense number of services and products. The Utilities watchdog is an independent organization set up by the government, which monitors the quality of a business's utilities. Examples of these organizations are OF WAT which is the regulator of the water industry, and Of Gas which monitors the gas industry.

There is also Of Gem which monitors the electricity industry, all of these organizations monitor the price, competition and they are also an organization that you can go to and make complaints about the quality of the service. Examples of these organizations web sites can be seen below: From the Of Gem website a large variety of information for customers, it is also the regulator for Britain's gas and electricity industries. Its role is to promote choice and value for all customers. From the Of Wat website you can see they have a range of thing to do from looking at faqs, publication and job vacancies.

Of Wat's mission is to regulate in a way that provides incentives and encourages the companies to achieve a world-class service in terms of quality and value for customers in England and Wales. The Trade associations is an industry trade group is generally a public relations organization funded, founded and formed by corporations that operate in a specific industry. Its purpose is generally to promote that industry through PR activities such as advertising, education, political donations, political pressure, publishing, and astroturfing.

There are different types of trade associations such as:  The organic Trade Associations (OTA) is a membership-based business association that focuses on the organic business community in North America. OTA's mission is to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy. A link to their website is shown below: Other associations are the DTI trade associations which with the Trade Association Forum to help associations deliver best practice to members. Various benchmarking initiatives and studies have been carried out. The Forum spreads the results around through, workshops and the publication of reports.

The DTI encourages all trade associations to belong to the Forum and to continue to improve their own performance in an increasingly competitive environment. Their website is shown below: From these websites you can see that the different types of trade associations have different types of relation into the industry it promotes. For example the Organic association is about how to protect the organic trade and benefit farmers and the public economy. As for DTI it is a forum that helps and delivers the best practise to members.

Sources:

  • Wikipedia: Environmental health Citizen Advice Bureau Trading Standard www.wikipedia.com