The Association of Consumer Support Organisations (ACSO), the trade body which represents the interests of consumers in the civil justice system and the organisations who support those consumers, has appointed two heavy hitters from the consumer and legal sectors to be independent advisors on ACSO’s Advisory Committee.
Alex Neill, previously director of policy and managing director of home products and services at Which? UK, and Crispin Passmore, formerly executive director at the Solicitors Regulation Authority, have taken up their new roles with immediate effect and will help shape the strategy for the organisation and provide independent oversight of key decision- making processes.
Charles Layfield, ACSO chair, said: “In Alex and Crispin we are lucky to have two highly experienced individuals in the consumer and regulatory arenas, both of which are at the heart ACSO’s core focus.
“They share our fundamental belief that policy, systems and practice on all sides must have the interests of consumers at their heart.
“All too often, vested interests from across all aspects of the sector are in the driving seat when it comes to making and managing claims, and unsurprisingly this leads to cynicism among the public and policymakers.
“These two appointments underscore our desire to do things differently. ACSO is a body that proactively engages with policymakers, regulators, industry and the media to ensure there is a properly functioning, competitive and sustainable justice system for honest consumers. We must drive best practice into the sector, and eradicate areas of malpractice that exist.”
Crispin Passmore said: “I fully endorse ACSO’s approach. Regulatory authorities face huge challenges to deliver the best consumer protection outcomes; they will welcome constructive engagement from organisations like ACSO that genuinely ‘think customer’ and avoid special pleading.”
Alex Neill said: “Business should benefit society, and not just make profits, especially if those profits risk customer detriment. I’m keen to help ACSO sponsor different ways of thinking about the nature of the contract between companies and their customers so that the reputation of business – so damaged in recent years – can begin to be restored.”