The Canadian Press will review the industry’s safety standards for all skis and snowboards, and the country’s biggest newspaper will review how the industry manages the new regulations.
In a letter sent Wednesday to industry associations and the Canadian Ski and Snowboard Association, the editors of the Canadian Press, the Globe and Mail, the Canadian Herald, and Maclean’s Canada called for a review of the industry as the government works to modernize and improve its regulations.
In the letter, the reporters, editors and editorial writers called for the review to be made public in “a manner consistent with a rigorous process for public reporting.”
They also urged the Canadian government to do more to ensure that all ski and snowboard brands are adequately represented on the industry review panel, saying that the panel “is in the best position to make decisions on industry safety.”
The move comes after a Globe and HarperCollins investigation found that many brands have been reluctant to publicly disclose information about safety concerns.
It also comes as industry groups say the new rules may mean fewer snowboard and skidboard manufacturers in the future.
“The industry is taking a huge risk in the wake of this review,” said Matt Tinsley, director of the advocacy group the Canadian Association of Manufacturers.
“There is a lot of pressure on the companies to do things right.
But they have been unwilling to do that.”
In an email, a spokesman for the government’s department of industry, tourism and recreation, said the department is working on establishing a working group to address safety concerns in the industry.
The review of safety standards will include a look at ski industry data, “as well as information from the ski industry itself and stakeholders,” the spokesman said.
“The working group will look into the overall safety profile of the sector and how it relates to consumer protection.”
The review will be conducted by a panel of experts, including representatives from industry, the ski board industry and the government, and will include “public consultation on safety issues and safety strategies,” the spokesperson said.
The panel will be comprised of members from the boards, ski industry and government, with an advisory committee of experts from the industry and public safety sectors.
It will also include representatives from consumer and government agencies, including the Canadian Institute for Health Information, and members of the public, the spokesman added.
As a result of the review, the government expects to have a new regulatory framework in place by the end of 2018, he said.
More to come.