Trust with key stakeholders is very important for a large corporation. Even more so with Tarion, which has a public trust function, a government-granted monopoly, a consumer protection mandate, and a regulatory responsibility over the building industry in Ontario.
Consumers who travel great distances to attend Tarion’s ANNUAL PUBLIC MEETING (APM) each year expect their questions answered, and accurately transcribed for the public record.
It is surprising that Tarion took it upon itself starting in 2013 to publish only a “summary” of consumer questions asked, and a somewhat embellished version of the answers they gave at the time.
Despite criticism in writing that this “summary” did not accurately reflect the questions consumers had asked, Tarion decided to proceed once again in 2014 with their controversial “summary” instead of “minutes”. Not only this, but at the 2014 APM consumers were told they were not allowed to video or audio record their own questions. Consumer requests for transcripts of the 2013 and 2014 APM Question Periods, have not been answered to date by either Tarion or the Ministry of Consumer Services .
Again this year, consumers have written to Tarion executives and Ministry officials to voice their concerns that this “summary” does not accurately reflect their questions or the answers given by Tarion at the time.
If Tarion is truly a “consumer protection” organization, as it keeps telling us, and if “the consumer’s interests are paramount” as they tell us, then why wouldn’t they embrace consumer input at this meeting, have it properly recorded for the public record, learn from it, and fix the problems which could make things better in the future? Consumers voicing concerns at this public meeting should not be painted as one-off, tough-luck cases, or perpetual malcontents. Listening carefully to consumer concerns and recording them accurately is the first step to making things better for the very people the warranty was created to protect in the first place – the new home buyer.
In the interests of transparency, fairness, accountability, and good corporate governance, why not publish actual minutes of the meeting, a full transcript of consumer concerns raised?
If the consumer is “paramount” to you Tarion, prove it. Publish a true transcript of your 2013 and 2014 APM question and answer period.
“When you’re telling the truth, you’ve only got one story”.
2 responses to ““Let every eye navigate for itself and trust no agent.” – William Shakespeare”
Minutes typically describe the events of the meeting, starting with a list of attendees, a statement of the issues considered by the participants, and related responses or decisions for the issues. They are not often, if ever, a verbatim transcript. So when you ask for the “actual minutes” you are asking for what was delivered.
I was present at Tarion’s APM and asked questions.
Tarion’s summary (http://www.tarion.com/About-Tarion/Documents/Annual%20Public%20Meetings/Meeting%20minutes%202014%20FINAL.pdf)
doesn’t begin to capture the ISSUES, ANGER, TEARS and FRUSTRATION expressed by many homeowners which a more verbatim minutes record of the Questions and Answers would.
Details of multiple cases of Tarion’s failures to protect homeowners were completely excluded.
The public must have access to “public” information!
Make Tarion Accountable