Over 100 complaints about door-to-door salespeople have now been lodged with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) since the national Do Not Knock campaign was launched in November. The most recent round of 18 complaints tells a familiar story with households complaining about pressure selling, misleading conduct and salespeople ignoring Do Not Knock stickers.
The complaints also show that energy retailers continue to worry households, making up over 60 percent of complaints.
‘We’re pleased that people are taking the time to visit www.donotknock.org.au to tell us their stories and register complaints, but we continue to be disappointed by energy retailers who are at the heart of complaints time and again,’ said Gerard Brody, Director of Policy and Campaigns with the Consumer Action Law Centre.
‘Energy retailers introduced their own marketing code of conduct back in January and we’d hoped that it would lead to an improvement in their door-to-door selling practices, but early signs suggest that problems are still rife.’
Australians have also been complaining about salespeople ignoring their Do Not Knock stickers, which Consumer Action believes amounts to trespass, as well as a potential breach of the Australian Consumer Law.
‘If someone has put up a Do Not Knock sticker their message to salespeople is clear – “leave me alone.” The fact that some salespeople are ignoring them shows a complete lack of respect for the household’s request and, in our view, this would be trespass.
‘If salespeople are going to continue to ignore the sticker, we’ll need to assign it greater legal standing under the Australian Consumer Law or introduce further consumer protections like a do not knock register or, if all else fails, an outright ban on contracting at the doorstep,’ said Mr Brody.
Other businesses to feature in previous complaints, as well as in this most recent round, are those selling pay TV and newspaper subscriptions. Consumer Action has written to these companies seeking information about their selling practices.