Your Board has been working hard this year, alongside the staff at Consumer NZ, grappling with the challenges the rapidly changing consumer environment brings for both consumers and their representatives.

We think it’s important for us to stay at the cutting edge of developing technology not only in terms of the product information and advice we provide but how we deliver our services to our consumer community. In all this we have not forgotten our faithful magazine readers, we remain committed to our magazine and we hope it shows.

Advancements in digital technology have given us unprecedented opportunities to engage with our members and to bring consumers together as a community. We think our voice is louder and our strength increases when we work together. As your elected Board, we would like to encourage all Consumer NZ members to actively engage with us and your fellow consumers.

That could mean reaching out to our Consumer Advisors to give us some information or to seek advice on an experience you have had with a company. It could mean jumping online and commenting on an article, or blog, by one of our specialist writers or it could be actively participating in one of our advocacy campaigns by emailing a company like Jetstar and urging them to do the right thing by consumers. We have more advocacy campaigns coming up in 2016 and we will be inviting you to be a part of them. You could also ask a retailer why they are not part of the Consumer Trusted group of retailers. Consumer Trusted is our way of lifting the game for retailers to ensure we all get a better and fairer service.

You are a member of one of the largest not for profit communities in New Zealand one of 50,000 paying members and 46,000 bronze members. That’s 96,000 of us! We are keen to build up that community even bigger to become a collective voice that cannot be ignored. Let’s take advantage of that. Together we can achieve positive change for New Zealand consumers if we harness the collective power of our community.

Richard Aston,
Consumer NZ chair